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'Tis the Season for Planting Bulbs

Now is the time to plant your spring-blooming bulbs, according to the October Gardening Guide on PlantationLakesGardenClub.org. The tulips, hyacinths, daffodils, and crocus you plant now will be a sight for sore eyes in spring!

If you're new to planting bulbs, you might be wondering how deep to plant them. According to Brecks.com, the rule of thumb for bulb planting is two to three times as deep as the bulbs is tall. This means that large bulbs like tulips or daffodils will be planted about 6 inches deep. Smaller bulbs will be planted 3-4 inches deep.

The depth of planting is measured from the surface level of the soil to the point of the bulb. The distance between plants is measured from the tip of one to the tip of the next bulb.

Do this planting after the ground cools, about six weeks before the ground freezes. Yes, you should water the bulbs after planting, and you should apply a commercial slow release "bulb food" fertilizer on the surface, not in the hole with the bulb. Bone meal is often recommended for bulbs, but some experts feel that today's commercial bone meal may attract rodents or you may find your pets trying to dig them up. In other words, probably not a good idea to choose bone meal!

After the ground freezes, apply commercial mulch, mulched leaves, or pine needles about two-three inches thick to minimize weeds and help to maintain a consistent temperature for the bulbs as the cool weather turns to cold and then begins to warm up again.

Now just relax, and wait for the first crocus to peak up through the snow as a harbinger of spring. The daffodils and hyacinths will not be far behind, and tulips will appear soon after that. By then, you'll be itching to plant some annuals!

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