Wednesday, October 26, 2011

I Heart Bulbs

iPhone photos of spring blooms in our yard.
Clockwise from top left: allium, hyacinths, mini-daffodils, grape hyacinths

I love planting bulbs. I think of them as a gift I plant for myself to open up in the spring. Even if you do not have a green thumb, bulbs are pretty hard to mess up. There are a lot of rules and guidelines for planting bulbs. I have disregarded most of them and the bulbs still bloom.

My aunt has been buying me bulbs for my birthday since I was in college. Some girls ask for clothes, I ask for bulbs. This year I received large cup daffodils, grape hyacinths, and tons of crocuses from my in-laws.

All you need is a shovel to plant them, but this year my dad let me borrow his fancy bulb auger.

Josh was nervous about me using his drill. I think I will be getting my own soon. Most packages usually recommend planting bulbs 4-6" apart. If you follow the rules and plant your bulbs individually, this auger would definitely be beneficial. It is much more efficient than the bulb planter pictured below.

While I was happily planting daffodils, Josh directed my attention to our apple trees. Low and behold, there was Woodrow the Woodchuck munching on some apples. He made my day. If you look closely, you  can see his tongue sticking out.

If you have a lot of critters, like Woodrow and squirrels, who may view your bulbs as a delicious treat, daffodils are going to be your best bet. They do not taste very good and they can be toxic, so the rodents and deer steer clear.

As I mentioned above, I do not follow all of the rules. I usually dig a whole and plop in 5-6 bulbs. This method is faster and it looks more natural when the flowers bloom in a cluster.

This year I even planted some crocuses in our yard. These guys are one of the first flowers to pop up. They bloom before the grass starts growing and eventually you just mow over the foliage. I will let you know how my little experiment works in the spring.

It is tempting to cut down leaves once the blooms fade. Don't. Wait about six weeks after the plant is done blooming to cut the foliage. The leaves feed the bulbs and cutting them down decreases the chances of having a healthy plant the following year. For more tips from real experts go to to: or

You do not have to wait until spring to enjoy some good bulb fun. I like planting amaryllis and paper whites in the winter. It's nice seeing something alive when everything outside is grey and dead. You can find these at most hardware stores.


  1. I'm about to plant some's hoping they bloom next year!

  2. Pretty photos! Thanks for stopping by and your nice comment. I'm following you now.

  3. Gosh I sure do admire you for your green thumb! Beautiful and how fun was Woodrow? :)
    Thanks for linking up to Show & Share!


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