Tulip and Daffodil Planting Tips
Unless the tulips are Species tulips, most varieties won’t return reliably, which is why we replant bulbs every fall. Tulips will grow in most soils. Avoid planting in low points that collect water, which will cause the bulbs to decay.
Prepare the area for planting by digging and turning the soil until loose. If the soil is tightly packed and breaks into clumps, work in some organic compost.
Plant the bulbs in groups or clusters for a more effective display. Dig out the area to the depth required and then backfill once the bulbs are placed. Or use a bulb planting tool to plant bulbs one at a time. 3x the bulb size is the recommended depth to plant, approximately 6” deep. Space 4” to 6” apart, pointy-side up, root plate downward.
Daffodil bulbs typically have a longer “nose” than tulip bulbs and can also be found as a double-nose bulb. Follow the instructions for planting tulip and adjust the depth to the bulb size. Plant bulbs 6”– 8” deep. Daffodils will return for another season if, after they bloom, the foliage is left in place until faded in order for the bulb to absorb and store energy. Some varieties will naturalize and multiply. Deer do not typically browse daffodils.
After backfilling the soil, give the area some water. Skip this step if it’s going to rain soon. There will be enough rain and snow cover to provide moisture until the spring.
Tulips can be planted in pots in the fall, stored in an unheated garage over the winter and brought out in the spring to enjoy the blooms. Choose a container size with enough diameter and depth for the volume of soil needed for optimal growth and good display.
Make sure the pots have good drainage and remain in a sheltered, cold environment. Keep the bulbs above freezing temperatures. A freeze & thaw cycle in a container will turn the bulbs to mush. Plant to the same depth as if planting in the ground but with tighter spacing, 1” to 2” apart, to fill the pot. Cover with soil mix and then water. No need to water again until early spring when the tulips break through the soil.
Thank you for all your efforts toward another beautiful May in Montclair.