Spring Bulb Planting | Tips & Tricks To Simplify The Process

August 07, 2022

We know that spring bulb planting may be the furthest thing from your mind during the busy fall season, but now is the time to utilize bulbs to ensure your colors are vibrant and thriving by the time spring rolls around.

What To Plant

Wondering what bulbs you should be planting in the coming weeks? Here are a few suggestions for a garden that will set you apart from your neighbors. As a bonus, these are also deer and rabbit resistant:

  • Daffodils: There are many types and colors of daffodils, each with different bloom times and colors, which will extend your spring display. Daffodils also multiply, so after a few years you can divide and transfer them elsewhere.
  • Snowdrops: Snowdrops are the first to pop in the spring, and while they are small, they are a welcoming sign of the sunny days to come.
  • Hyacinth: Hyacinth will fade with the years, losing at least 50% bloom, but they are impactful and provide fragrance. They are perfect to use sparingly as an accent to your garden.
  • Allium: Allium is a very different plant that is great for pollinators coming out mid-spring.

Browse catalogs and online bulb dealers to find unique options for your containers and annual beds. Hyacinths and alliums are great options you don’t see every day, but you don’t have to stop there. Local garden shops are great resources for bulbs that work in your area. If you choose to use an online dealer, we recommend giving Brent and Becky’s Bulbs a try.

Spring Bulb Planting: Depth and Timing

Before you start planting, we recommend purchasing a hand trowel with a ruler to help find the proper depth for spring bulb planting.  A good rule of thumb is to plant bulbs 3x the depth of their height. At the base of each hole, place 1/4 to 1/2 cup of bulb fertilizer before placing the bulb point-side upwards so the shoot can reach the surface. For most bulbs, you should plant approximately 4-7 bulbs in each hole.

Tip: If you have a lot of ground to cover, consider using a bulb planter that attaches to a power drill to help speed the process. These also work very well if you are planting inside an annual bed with desirable flowers. A shovel will do more damage to the plants you want to keep.

We recommend planting in late fall, before the ground freezes. Here are a couple of easy tips to remember when trying to determine the timing for spring bulb planting:

  • Plant when nighttime temperatures are consistently below 40 degrees.
  • If you live in a warmer climate and that low temperature may be a stretch, refrigerate your bulbs until one month before anticipated flowering and follow planting directions. It’s also possible to purchase bulbs pre-chilled.

Let your imagination go wild, and plan for some color this spring! Interested in reading more grounds tips? Be sure to check out our Resource Center for more.