Spring flowering bulbs are loved by gardeners for their colour and the spectacular displays provided by varieties such as Daffodils, Freesias, Hyacinths and Tulips. They are easy to grow, require little water and provide a burst of colour in your garden or pot at the start of Spring.
Below are some tips on how to get a beautiful display of bulbs come Spring:
- Buy your bulbs as early as possible and be sure to select the healthiest bulbs. Look for bulbs that are firm and plump when you squeeze them, don’t plant anything that is soft, squashy, diseased or mouldy.
- Plant in rows or groups for a spectacular display or mix it up a little by scattering them about 10cm apart.
- Well drained soil and lots of sun are their main requirements but make sure you also dig in plenty of compost and well-rotted manure where possible.
- Most bulbs grow well in pots or tubs, but Tulips, Hyacinths, Daffodils and Dutch Crocus are particularly suited to being grown this way. Minimise the amount of hot afternoon sun as high temperatures can affect bulb flowering.
- Most bulbs need full sun or partial sun, but if you are in an area with hot summers, delay planting until the weather and the soil has cooled down.
- Remember to also check your bulb packet for the correct planting depth, as this will play a big part in successful germination. As a general guide, plant your bulbs 2-3 times as deep as they are wide.
- Most bulbs should be planted ‘pointy end up’ except ranunculi, which like to be planted claws down.
- Make sure your bulbs have good drainage and adequate moisture during the growing season.
- Avoid over fertilising bulbs, especially those in pots. A little blood and bone at planting time, and then some slow release fertiliser as flowering finishes will ensure healthy bulbs for the following year.
- Place your Tulips and Hyacinth in the crisper section of the refrigerator for 6-8 weeks before planting. The fridge replicates the cold winter temperatures the bulbs experience in their native habitat and helps them to perform better in our relatively warm climate. Lift these varieteies and store in a cool dark place to plant again the following year.
Flowering bulbs are perennial in nature – so they are set and forget plants - and can be left in the ground to multiply and flower year after year, with the exception of just a few like tulips, which like to lifted each year.
Mr Fothergill’s has a beautiful range of Spring Flowering bulbs which are available in garden centres and leading national retailers, with a select range also available for purchase through our online store. If you are after a particular variety contact our Customer Service team on 02 4571 6200 to find your nearest retailer.
Photo by Katherine McCormack