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Spring Bulb Planting | Tips & Tricks To Simplify The Process

We know that spring bulb planting may be the furthest thing from your mind during the holiday season, but believe it or not, now is the best time to plant your bulbs for spring. Bulbs take a little bit of planning to ensure success but require little care once planted. To grow and flower, they need to have met their chilling requirement, which means they need to be in the ground for a certain number of cold days below a specific temperature. It is reasonably safe to say that you should put them in the ground soon, especially if your soil freezes. A safe bet is to have them planted before Christmas.

Tip: Don’t have time to worry about your spring garden with all of the holiday preparations you have to do? It is also possible to purchase pre-chilled bulbs previously-stored in cold temperatures. Just read the descriptions and instructions for the proper planting time in your area.

What To Plant

Wondering what bulbs you should be planting in the coming weeks? Here are a few of SSC Grounds Manager Brandon Haley’s suggestions for a garden that will set you apart from your neighbors:

  • Daffodils: Daffodils are one of the first flowers to bloom each year and are always a welcome sight to let you know that spring is coming.
  • Tulips: As another common spring bulb, tulips offer varying colors for your spring garden.

Browse catalogs and online bulb dealers to find unique options for your containers and annual beds. Hyacinths, alliums, and fritillaria are great options that you don’t see every day, but you don’t have to stop there.

Spring Bulb Planting Tips

Before you start planting, we recommend purchasing a hand trowel with a ruler to help find the proper depth for spring bulb planting. Different species require different depths, so be sure to read the instructions for each species before starting. The point of the bulb should face upwards so the shoot can reach the surface.

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.

Bulbs are typically perennial plants, but they usually do not flower well in future years. For locations south of KY/TN, consider bulbs good for one year unless they specifically state that they naturalize. In cooler climates, bulbs may come back year after year. Check with your local garden center to see if you should dig the bulbs up for storage each year or leave them in the ground.

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. 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.

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The Compass Network

As a member of Compass Group North America, a $16 billion food and support services organization, SSC has an incredible array of resources at our fingertips, and we put those resources to work for our partners. Compass Group has existing relationships with institutions in all 50 states through its diverse family of business lines including Chartwells, Bon Appetit, FLIK, and Canteen.

Compass group brings unshakable financial stability to support our growth, allowing SSC to invest in innovations for our partners. This support also brings peace of mind to our partnerships by allowing us to take more risk and guarantee outcomes. We can even offer up-front capital investments for facility infrastructure improvements, leading to immediate and long-term financial payoff for your campus.

The Compass Network

As a member of Compass Group North America, a $16 billion food and support services organization, SSC has an incredible array of resources at our fingertips, and we put those resources to work for our partners. Compass Group has existing relationships with institutions in all 50 states through its diverse family of business lines including Chartwells, Bon Appetit, FLIK, and Canteen.

Compass group brings unshakable financial stability to support our growth, allowing SSC to invest in innovations for our partners. This support also brings peace of mind to our partnerships by allowing us to take more risk and guarantee outcomes. We can even offer up-front capital investments for facility infrastructure improvements, leading to immediate and long-term financial payoff for your campus.