Planting – Protecting Bulbs

I found a packet of Butterfly friendly Spring bulbs this year. Since I am all about attracting butterflies to my gardens, I couldn’t resist. Of course, just one wasn’t enough, and I bought two. I had an instant dilemma when I opened the packages, the bulbs were all mixed up. I had no idea what was which, or which was what, and there were dozens of them. I gave up trying to identify variety and sorted them by sizes. Larger bulbs in the back of my pot, smaller sizes up front, and a row of a tulip I like in the middle.

They are planted way too close, but since they are a one season planting in garden pots, I will decide after they bloom if I am going to save and replant another year. The biggest problem I must solve is keeping the critters that munch on bulbs out of the pots. In soft dirt they will be easy pickings for rodents that dig.

I came up with a solution I hope will work for me. I used this tactic in my spring garden buckets and will try it with the bulb plantings. I cut the grates out of flat trays and secure them with large six inch anchor pins. When the bulbs begin to sprout I will remove the plastic grids and drape some netting over them. It gives me joy to think ahead to Springtime and butterflies.

Plants and Plans – Bargain Bulbs

This has been my week for bargains. I stopped in a local box store Friday and found bins of bulbs that had not sold. They were almost giving them away at 75 percent off. I bought several packs to force in the Spring.

FORCING THE BULBS is not difficult. There are several ways to do this. The bulbs can be shallowly planted and kept outdoors in a cold frame. Another way is to plant and keep the bulbs in the back of the fridge. I have had success with this in the past. This year I am hoping to force some of the tulips in this way.

FORCING BULBS IN WATER is another way to bring them into bloom. I have success with this technique using hyacinth bulbs. I have never tried with tulips, but this year will give it a go. I’ll update this post in the Spring.

My bulbs in brown lunch bags getting a shot of cold air in the crisper bin of my refridgerator.