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Plant bulbs for spring color

Updated on March 11, 2017

Fall is the best time to buy your bulbs. Bulbs can provide you with an early show of color in spring, are easy to take care of and are easy to plant. Because they multiple over the years though their root system all you have to do is dig them up and break off the smaller bulbs from the main bulb and replant increasing your number of blooms.

Fall bulbs come in three types

There are three types of bulbs to choose from:

  • Species - those that grow in the wild.
  • Hybrids - those that are obtained by cross-breeding.
  • Horticultural varieties - more highly specialized through pollination of two species or varieties.

Many of the popular hybrids have bigger blooms and in more vivid colors. They can cost more but are well worth the price - three or four bulbs can reproduce off shoots in two years increasing your display.

Planting bulbs

Bulbs need to be planted below area freeze line, which can be anywhere from six to eight inches deep, always read instruction on bulb package. Prepare the soil by adding a little bone meal, tap the soil down firmly and add extra protection from the weather with a layer of loose mulch. Since bulbs require well-drained soil, improve heavy soil by mixing in coarse sand and light soil with decomposed organic matter.

Rewards of bulbs

Bulbs, corms and tubers are the easiest and most rewarding of garden plants. They can be planted as stand alone plants, ground-cover, in groupings, in a rock garden or around a tree and always look great. They can be left in the ground year after year. Many, like tulips, lilies and irises, can be used as cut flowers to bring the Spring into your house. By purchasing bulbs, corms and tubers that bloom at different times throughout the year you can design a interesting display of vivid, rich color flowers for months, instead of weeks.

Taking care

With care your bulbs can last for years. Water when needed, hand weed, and add compost or commercial bulb food in Spring. After flowers die off, let the foliage die off naturally as this allows the bulb to store food for the next years growth. To help keep plants blooming and avoid overcrowding, divide plants every four or five years.

How to Force Bulbs in Glass Vases and Containers

© 2012 galine

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