Fall is the only time you should plant spring bulbs as they must be cold vernalized in order to produce a flower. Bulbs like the soil temperature to be between 40-50 degrees when planted. In Maryland this usually hits late Sept – Mid to late November. Waiting until after the first frost never hurts.
Bulbs prefer full to part sun – at least 5-6 hours, adequate drainage, and protection from squirrels.
Work up the soil and add some soil amendment to help bulb roots get a start. Layout bulbs, keeping in mind clumping or random dense scattering looks best. A rule of thumb is to dig the hole 2-3 times the diameter of the bulb in depth. Place a bulb in the hole roots down, pointy end up. If you cannot tell, place the bulb on its side and it will grow correctly.
Use a bulb-tone type fertilizer as too much nitrogen can diminish blooms.
Bulbs we carry – varieties:
Tulips – Tarda, Triumph, and Darwin
Narcissus – Poeticus, Double, Jonquil, and Daffodil
Muscari – grape hyacinth
Snow Drops – Leucojum and Galanthus
The Mill also carries Paperwhites, and Amaryllis for indoor planting.
According to the drought report published in June 2021 by NOAA, many areas of the Mid-Atlantic are having above normal temperatures and below normal rainfall. The soil across the region is becoming very dry after a wet winter and spring.
If you want to maintain the health of your plants you should consider watering prior to stressing the plant by allowing it to wilt and throw leaves.