Here in Central New York (Zone 5), it is pretty much too late to plant
tulip and daffodil bulbs. I received them late and it's been raining
almost nonstop, with temperatures from the low 40s to mid50s. Is it
safe to plant these bulbs, or should they be preserved until spring?
If I have to preserve them over winter, how do I do that?
I planted some last year in Rochester, in mid-November. They all did fine.
Keep your eye on the weather forecasts and have the trowel ready. Have the
shotgun ready for the deer, who will eat your tulips in the spring.
I routinely planted very late in Anchorage, Alaska when I lived there,
sometimes having to break through a thin layer of frozen soil to do it.
This was not by choice -- some supplier were just slow. As long as the
bed is prepared well and has decent drainage (most bulbs dislike
permanently sodden soil) you should have no problems.
I don't know about the US but here in the UK you should plant tulip
bulbs later rather than earlier ( say late Oct early Nov) to avoid a
disease known as "Tulip Fire" which tends to attack tulip bulbs planted
at the same time as you plant Narcissus in late September.
Jan Flora wrote:
If you can get a shovel in the ground, it's fine to plant them now.
I doubt your soils are frozen yet.
Otherwise, you can pot the bulbs up and chill them for a couple of months,
then bring them to bloom indoors, a method called "forcing".
Search http://groups.google.com for "bulb forcing faq" in the rec.gardens
Unplanted storage will probably just lead to tbe bulbs respiring themselves
Kay, who's planted bulbs as late as mid December in the upper midwest. With
snow on the ground -- but the soil was still warm enough to dig.
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