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Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Save Those Spring Bulbs!

Are your beautiful spring bulbs done blooming? Don't throw them out! You can enjoy them for many years to come if you plant them in your yard.

Tulips, daffodils, paperwhites, crocus, hyacinth -- all of them can be planted in your yard and they will greet you next spring with their cheery blooms. (See the bottom for a special note on Easter Lilies.)

When the ground thaws enough for you to dig in, you can go ahead and plant your bulbs. This article provides information on planting bulbs (note: it focuses mainly on fall planting, but provides good tips on how to plant bulbs).

Here's a few tips from my own experience:

- plant them in places that you won't later be planting annuals or perennials. Bulbs are hard to locate after they die back and you don't want to contiually dig them up as you plant your other flowers

- If digging up or relocating bulbs, be sure to dig deep enough so that you get the entire bulb and don't split the bulb or merely remove the green leaves.

- Don't plant the bulb too deep; some bulbs will send up leaves but be unable to bloom if planted too deep

- Bulbs are prolific reproducers. Every few years you can thin out your crop, which will enable remaining bulbs to bloom better. (If bulbs in a crowded location don't bloom, it signals a need to thin them and provide some breathing room.)

A little effort now will provide great rewards next year, and in years go come. So put on your gardening gloves and plant your bulbs this month. It's the ultimate in being earth-friendly and recycling.
* Easter Lilies can be planted after Easter and will re-bloom this summer. They will not come back the next year.