bulbs covered by mulch

I have some hyacinth and crocus bulbs planted in a bed that is covered by wood chip mulch. The bulbs do produce leaves and small flowers, but nothing like they should. Is the mulch inhibiting the flower production?
Zone 5
Thanx
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Will Renkel
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Mulch won't DIRECTLY cause problems with flowering, unless you're dealing with a plant that really insists on dry soil. So always check the usual suspects first.
1) Soil test: Buy a kit and do it yourself, or take some samples to your state cooperative extension service, who will probably do it dirt cheap. Although bulbs aren't usually VERY fussy, it's always possible that the soil is really out of whack, in terms of either pH or nutrients. Anything you add to the soil can affect pH, and mulches are no exception.
2) What was the consistency of the soil to begin with? Nice? Too much clay? What your soil like 12 hours, and a couple of days after good rain soaking?
3) How long have the bulbs been in the ground?
4) How long has the planting area been used? If it was a new garden when you planted it, how did you prepare the soil?
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yes, crocus especially prefers well drained soil, but it won't be affected by the slight pH lowering of wood chips. In fact, it is a very good mulch for bulbs. providing good amounts of P. Also, crocus will want some sun to really prosper. hiacinth, if it is muscari, thrives in almost all circumstances, except poorly drained soil.
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On Tue, 17 May 2005 10:34:17 +0000 (UTC), snipped-for-privacy@xnet.com (Will Renkel) wrote:

What Doug said and... We're just gaining experience with bulbs ourselves. We planted 200 in a small plot and thought we would have a riot of color. It turns out that 200 bulbs that bloom at different times is nowhere near a "riot"- not even a disturbence-LOL!. Still they get better as they naturalize the area and this year is better than last. Be sure to let the leaves live as long as possible so the bulbs store lots of energy for next year. A neighbor shower us how to tie up the leaves so they stand up and continue to get light (sort of like corn stalks at halloween). Bone meal is a good fertilizer.
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> >> >> I have some hyacinth and crocus bulbs planted in a bed that is covered by >> wood chip mulch. >> The bulbs do produce leaves and small flowers, but nothing like they >> should. >> Is the mulch inhibiting the flower production? >> >> Zone 5 >> >> Thanx > >Mulch won't DIRECTLY cause problems with flowering, unless you're dealing >with a plant that really insists on dry soil. So always check the usual >suspects first. > >1) Soil test: Buy a kit and do it yourself, or take some samples to your >state cooperative extension service, who will probably do it dirt cheap. >Although bulbs aren't usually VERY fussy, it's always possible that the soil >is really out of whack, in terms of either pH or nutrients. Anything you add >to the soil can affect pH, and mulches are no exception. > see below about what was in bed previously did not do a sample test >2) What was the consistency of the soil to begin with? Nice? Too much clay? >What your soil like 12 hours, and a couple of days after good rain soaking? > Soil consistency before was well drained and very fertile. Had some geraniums in it last year and they bloomed profusely. >3) How long have the bulbs been in the ground? This is first year for the bulbs. > >4) How long has the planting area been used? If it was a new garden when you >planted it, how did you prepare the soil? > The area has been used for annuals for 10+ years So just dug and planted bulbs. >
Thanx for all te replys and suggestions and help.
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OK. Do the test. Be sure to test in 3-4 spots in the same bed, testing for both pH and nutrients (which means you need the fancier test kit). Tedious, but worthwhile.
Then, down the list we go.....
- Where did you buy the bulbs, and what condition were they in? I've seen bulbs in some stores that are slightly soft and wrinkled like old potatoes that are beginning to dehydrate. If these poorly treated bulbs were subjected to further insults, they might perform marginally the first year.
- In what week of what month did you plant them?
- Exactly where (town and state) in zone 5 do you live? Mini-climates are important.
I'd ask about whether they were under too much snow cover, but mine were under a 5 foot pile of snow until mid-March, and they started cranking two days after it all melted. I think they see it as a challenge.
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> > >> see below about what was in bed previously >> did not do a sample test > >OK. Do the test. Be sure to test in 3-4 spots in the same bed, testing for >both pH and nutrients (which means you need the fancier test kit). Tedious, >but worthwhile. > Will work on that. >Then, down the list we go..... > >- Where did you buy the bulbs, and what condition were they in? I've seen >bulbs in some stores that are slightly soft and wrinkled like old potatoes >that are beginning to dehydrate. If these poorly treated bulbs were >subjected to further insults, they might perform marginally the first year. From Brecks mail order > >- In what week of what month did you plant them? I believe about first week November > >- Exactly where (town and state) in zone 5 do you live? Mini-climates are >important. Wheaton Illinois Many neighbors have beautiful stuff. > >I'd ask about whether they were under too much snow cover, but mine were >under a 5 foot pile of snow until mid-March, and they started cranking two >days after it all melted. I think they see it as a challenge. > > Minimal snow cover.
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They could just be planted too deep. They will send up leaves but no flowers
-- Dana www3.sympatico.ca/lostmermaid

for
Tedious,
seen
potatoes
year.
are
were
two
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