bulbs

I planted some bulbs last year. After the flowers are gone how long should I wait before I cut down the leaves and stems?
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You can cut down the stems anytime after the flowers are finished--in fact, it's a good idea to do it, so the plant won't put any energy into making seeds.
You should not cut back the leaves at all. You should wait until they turn brown and wither before removing them. As a new gardener, this used to bother me, but I soon learned there are lots of other things to do and turn my attention to, and before you know it, it will be high summer and the foliage will be gone.
You can plant perennials around the bulbs, so that their foliage will help distract from the fading bulb foliage.
Cheers, Sue
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The RHS did extensive trials over many years and their results showed that the leaves of spring bulbous plants can be removed after 42 days, even if still green. Cut before that time does cause deterioration but the 42 day timing gives no problems. I have kept to this for thirty years and all has been well and productive. Best Wishes.

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I should have stated that the 42 days is taken from the day the bloom has finished. Sorry Best Wishes.

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On Fri, 14 May 2004 15:11:53 +0000, Larry wrote:

You can cut the flower STEM(s) off after the flower dies. I let leaves stay until they are showing signs of yellowing/browning. Then I cut them off.
Tom
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option: harvest the seeds, let the foliage do what it wants (or shove it down, if you need to hide it)
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