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Planting Daffodil bulbs

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Production team | 16:43 UK time, Friday, 18 September 2009

Hi all

Tonight's show is packed with topical information about taking late summer cuttings, planting bulbs for early spring flowers and forcing bulbs for winter, and Toby will be demonstrating the best methods of planting a variety of bulbs throughout the borders and beds at Greenacre.

For all of you hoping for spring flowering bulbs next year here are some useful tips for what you should be doing now:

  • Plant spring-flowering bulbs in early autumn, preferably by the end of September (when many established bulbs are beginning to develop new roots). Tulips are the exception to this rule and are best planted in November. Plant summer-flowering bulbs in early spring and autumn-flowering by late summer.
  • Most bulbs are acquired and planted when dry i.e. in a dormant, leafless, rootless state. Plant as soon as possible. They may flower poorly following late planting or a lengthy storage.
  • Most hardy bulbs are from dry summer climates and prefer a warm sunny site with good drainage. Bulbs from cool, moist woodland habitats need similar garden conditions. Soil conditions are important. Most bulbs have only a short period in leaf before dying back. Improve light or sandy soils with humus, incorporated below bulb depth; improve drainage on heavy soils with sharp grit or sand.
  • Plant in groups. Excavate a hole to the required planting depth. Fork in some bone meal then space them about twice the bulb's own height apart. Carefully replace the soil and firm down. Plant to two or three times bulb height i.e. the tip of a 5cm (2in) high bulb should be 10-15cm (4-6in) below soil level.

Also on tonight's show Alys will be showing us all how to make some quick and easy Christmas gifts using bulbs and you can read more about this on her blog.
We'll be visiting Carol at Glebe Cottage where she'll be celebrating the autumn stunner that is, Cyclamen hederifolium and we'll be following the charming trail of the Weardale daffodil, where the persistent villagers of Weardale, in County Durham have tracked down their local variety after years in the wilderness.
That's all for now, enjoy your gardening weekend.

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