Having a gorgeous yard full of flowering Spring bulbs isn’t an impossible dream. Providing the correct planting and after care for them almost guarantees that you will enjoy them for years to come!
Timing is very important when it comes to bulb success. Optimal planting time for most spring bulbs (like tulips, daffodils, crocus, & hyacinths) is in the fall when ground temperatures are cool, but before the first freeze in your area. This will give them an opportunity to establish a root system and allow them to go through a dormancy period before growing foliage and blooming in the Spring. Failing to plant your bulbs in the Fall, can mean that your bulbs won’t flower, or will bloom down into the leaves. Chilling them for several weeks prior to planting will help if you absolutely must plant them in early Spring. If you choose to fertilize your Spring bulbs, do so at initial planting and subsequent years as they begin to sprout in the Spring with a specific bulb formula.
After Blooming Care
Similar to deadheading roses, when your flowering bulbs start to fade you will want to remove the withering bloom by pinching off or cutting with clean pruning shears. Deadheading them helps to preserve precious energy that would otherwise go into creating seeds. You want to leave your deadheaded bulbs in the ground for at least another six to eight weeks after they finish blooming. If you are going to dig them up and replant them in the fall you will want to give them that extra time to absorb plenty of energy from the sun in order to bloom the following year. DO NOT cut back the foliage on your deadheaded plants before the six to eight week period after blooming, or you risk losing your blooms for the next year. Be sure that your bulbs are receiving adequate sun where they are located, and trees or other plants haven’t grown to the point where they are blocking light, or you will need to relocate them.
Now you are prepared to care for your Spring bulbs and ensure they give you beautiful blooms for years to come. Happy Gardening!