Daffodils that don't bloom

I have some clumps of daffodils that don't bloom or else bloom very sparsely. Some have buds that die off. I've tried giving them bone meal after bloom (or nonbloom), but it hasn't helped. Other daffodils in my yard bloom profusely. I am about to dig up the non-bloomers. Question: Should I try replanting them elsewhere, with nice compost in the holes etc., or should I let them do their bit by tossing them into the compost pile?
heclo East central Illinois
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wrote:

If they are not burried deep enough they may not bloom, so after the foliage dies back, dig them out and make sure they are burried six inches and put the phosphorous in the hole when you replant them. If they don't bloom next year it can be that you are cutting off the foliage sooner than you should and the plant is not getting enough nutrition from the sun.
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snipped-for-privacy@insightbb.com says...

1) Some varieties do better than others, and it can depend on climate. Some have buds that like to rot if damp for too long. Some dry out if weather gets hot and dry too fast. If you can figure out what they like, you may be able to move them to a cooler/hotter sunnier/ shadier moister/drier place and have better results.
2) If they have been in the same place for awhile, the bulbs may be too crowded. Under good conditions they will divide every two or three years, and after awhile the cluster gets so big and crowded that most of the bulbs barely get enough nutrition to survive. If you dig, separate, and replant with some fresh soil they can do well again for several years.
3) If they don't do well in your yard in spite of your best efforts, replace them with something that works better.
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Daffs tend to bury themselves deeper after a few years and that will stop blooming. After the foliage dies back separate and replant them. 4-6 inches deep.
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Johnny Borborigmi wrote:

I don't find that to be true at all (that they stop blooming because they are too deep). I plant my Daffodils 8 inches deep (because I plant annuals on top of them and don't want to disturb the bulbs) and they keep blooming (and multiply) every year.
Daffodils stop blooming because the soil is very poor and/or the foliage is not left in place long enough for the new bloom (for next year) to develop. Deadheading and applying bone meal will help keep them blooming every year.
--
Bill R. (Ohio Valley, U.S.A)

Gardening for over 40 years
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Mine have been in place for over 15 years. They're overcrowded and the bloom has definitely lessened. They do need to be separated - at least once in 15 years! <G>
--
Ann, gardening in Zone 6a
South of Boston, Massachusetts
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I've received a variety of answers here. I'll answer various questions that were raised:
1. I always let the foliage die off on its own, and I always deadhead (though not always soon enough). Some of the foliage gets shaded by hostas after a while -- but those aren't necessarily the ones that don't bloom.
2. There's been some disagreement in the answers about whether they're the right depth. Since some of those clumps look "leggy," I suspect they're not deep enough, rather than too deep.
3. Some of them were getting lots of sun when they were planted, but their spots are now shady. However, there doesn't seem to be much consistency there -- some of the good bloomers are equally shaded.
4. Some of the clumps that don't bloom are newer than the good bloomers, so I don't think they're too crowded.
5. Central Illinois soil is good (think corn and soybeans), and I think I put compost in with everything when they were first planted.
So -- I'll put markers on the duds, and once the foliage has died back I'll dig them up. I'll replant them at the proper depth, if that seemed to be a problem, I'll move some to sunnier locations, and I'll give everything some compost and phosphorusand/or bone meal. And then if they still don't bloom -- they're compost.
Thanks, everyone, for your replies.
helco
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I planted daffs along a very long drive. they are "naturalized" and go into deep shade. the original holes were scraped hollows in basically limestone type gravel.
8 years later. they bloom, they thrive, the clumps increase every year. they get no fertilizer. go figure. If I had an unproductive clump I would pull it, stake the area and order something else for the spot. Ingrid

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ List Manager: Puregold Goldfish List at http://weloveteaching.com/puregold / sign up: http://groups.google.com/groups/dir?hl=en&q=puregold&qt_s=Group+lookup www.drsolo.com Solve the problem, dont waste energy finding who's to blame ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ I receive no compensation for running the Puregold list or Puregold website. I do not run nor receive any money from the ads at the old Puregold site. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Zone 5 next to Lake Michigan
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One thing that was not mentioned is whether the bulbs were planted at the same time. When I first moved into my apartment (Brooklyn), I wanted to get some bulbs planted (it was late fall) so there would be something blooming the following Spring. As they years have passed, these first ones have not done so well. I would plant fresher bulbs from more reputable places (i.e., not Home Depot or Lowe's . . . ) and these have thrived. This Spring, the ones that had skinny foliage and did not bloom were yanked because they will never get better after 5-6 years, imho.
I think a little serendipity comes into play -- as noted by the writer noted immediately below if the plants like where they are, they will thrive even if under ":adverse conditions".
On May 3, 8:02 am, snipped-for-privacy@wi.rr.xx.com wrote:

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I agree. sherpers is a good place for good bulbs. Ingrid

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ List Manager: Puregold Goldfish List at http://weloveteaching.com/puregold / sign up: http://groups.google.com/groups/dir?hl=en&q=puregold&qt_s=Group+lookup www.drsolo.com Solve the problem, dont waste energy finding who's to blame ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ I receive no compensation for running the Puregold list or Puregold website. I do not run nor receive any money from the ads at the old Puregold site. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Zone 5 next to Lake Michigan
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Around here (Ohio) we dig up the bulbs every few years, discard the small bulbs, and replant the large bulbs. This is done after the foliage dies down, and there will be blooms the following spring.
I've heard many explanations of why we do this, and the only one that makes sense to me is overcrowding. Regardless of the lack of explanation, I know it does work.
helco wrote:

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