A Nitty Gritty Detail About Planting Bulbs Late
November 24, 2010
Allan in Daffodils, Flowering Bulbs, Gardening Tips & Advice, Musings on Gardening, Narcissus, Spring Flowering Bulbs, flowers, gardens, planting bulbs too late, time to plant bulbs

 Assorted narcissus, http://awaytogarden.com/garden-faq/flower-bulb-faqsWherever one searches, the advice is the same: - spring flowering bulbs may be planted until the earth freezes over. In most locations in the northern hemisphere, that means up until the end of December. Ha!  Last year, in mid November, I planted a collection of daffodils and narcissus and this past spring all that I got where green shoots. I presumed that the bulbs had not been large enough or healthy enough. After a year of manufacturing energy in my garden, I expect they will surely pump out flowers by next season. Given how much I paid for the bulbs, that’s a lot of money spent to wait 2 years to see results.

As it turns out, the explanation above, for failure to flower, is not the reason the bulbs did not bloom. According to what I have discovered on line, they were delinquent because I had planted them too late. It seems, and I did not know this before, that narcissus and daffodil bulbs need a few weeks of temperate weather to grow roots in order to bloom the following spring. That prerequisite is not necessary for tulips. Prior to accidentally stumbling across this information, I had presumed, wrongly, that all spring flowering bulbs may be planted up until the earth freezes over. No one offered this advice with the caveat that gardeners who live in areas where winter arrives early, need to follow different instructions. Here in Montreal, Quebec, one must plant narcissus and daffodils no later than end October to ensure blooms the following spring. I wish that I might have discovered this information a month ago because only last week did I plant another batch of narcissus. Oh well, I suppose it’s not too bad to wait until spring 2012 to see the fruits of my labor. After all, we gardeners are such a patient lot!!!

Article originally appeared on Garden Design, Montreal, Perennial Flower Gardens, Gardening Tips, Gardening Advice, Gardening Book Reviews (http://allanbecker-gardenguru.squarespace.com/).
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