Layer Bulbs for Longer Bloom

I’m heading outside this weekend to plant a bunch of tulip, daffodil, and crocus bulbs for a terrific explosion of color next spring. My super secret to getting two—or even three times—the blooms in the same amount of garden space is a fantastic layering trick! All you do is dig one hole about 9 inches deep, then plant several layers of bulbs in the same spot. Here’s how:

  1. Set the bulbs of the latest bloomers you’ve chosen (usually late tulips or lilies) in the bottom of the hole.
  2. Replace enough soil to barely cover the tips of those bulbs, then set in the next layer (early- and mid-season tulips are a good choice, and so are daffodils).
  3. Replace more soil, then add a layer of still smaller bulbs, like grape hyacinths, and cover them, too.
  4. If you still have room, repeat the process of adding more soil, then setting in the top layer of smaller bulbs (perhaps a mix of snow crocuses for extra-early color and squills for a little later color).
  5. Finish with a mulch of leaves, shredded bark, or wood chips, plus a scattering of moth crystals over the top to help keep critters away.

Remember, the biggest mistake you can make when planting bulbs is to scatter them all over the place. Trust me—whether you’re planting 20 bulbs or 200, you’ll always get the biggest bang for your gardening buck by growing ‘em in groups. A half-dozen bulbs is a bare minimum for each group, but you know what they say—the more, the merrier!

Want hundreds more terrific tips for growing the most beautiful blooms on the block? Check out my Flower Garden Problem Solver book—FREE for 21 days!

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