Spring flowering bulbs are planted in the fall. This gives them a chance to dig in and develop some roots before it gets too cold to do any more growing.
O.K., so when, exactly in the fall do you plant? Here are four different ways to figure out when the bulbs should go into the ground; use any one that makes sense to you:
By the way, some gardeners swear by the following tip: plant your bulbs during a waxing moon, not a waning moon. Waxing: becoming fuller; waning: becoming less and less full. (You obviously have to have one of those calendars that shows the phases of the moon, or else you have to start noticing what the moon is doing yourself.)
- about 6 weeks before the ground freezes solid. But it's not always easy to find out when that is going to happen, is it? Well, here are a few more ways of telling when to plant your spring-flowering bulbs:
- when the soil temperature falls below 60 degrees Fahrenheit (15 degrees Celsius). O.K. but where do you buy a soil thermometer?
- after the first heavy frost. A heavy frost is when you wake up and your neighbour's roof looks white, or your car's windshield is frosted over first thing in the morning. If you're not up early in the morning, you may have to rely on the last tip:
- 4 - 8 weeks after bulbs first start appearing for sale in local supermarkets and hardware stores. By this time, of course, it's too late to order them from mail-order gardening catalogs, but some of the on-line catalogs may still be able to get you some bulbs to you in time for you to plant them before the ground freezes solid.