Beautiful tulips, the result of planting fall bulbs!
Living in the Ottawa area we are treated every spring to an amazing show of tulips all over the capital region showcased during the Tulip Festival. For the home owner planting fall bulbs is an easy way to enjoy beautiful colour on your own property.
Lindsay Landscape plants bulbs for some clients every year. Planting should be done anytime from late September in to late November or even December if the ground is not yet frozen solid. Tulips, daffodils, hyacinth, and crocus are spring flowering and considered hardy. They need to have the dormant rest during the winter. Once the snow begins to melt in the spring the bulbs are watered with the melting snow and they begin to grow.
Plant in well drained soil, adding bonemeal to the planting bed may help keep squirrels from stealing the bulbs. We would recommend mulching to help prevent weeds, retain moisture and if there is a severe winter, some mulch will help protect them from damage. Planting in clumps is an attractive option, giving the best hit of colour in the spring when the bulbs flower.
Once blooming has finished let the leaves die back, then carefully remove. You can leave the bulbs in the ground but many gardeners suggest after 3 years, removing and splitting them. Some well thought out planning in your garden will ensure that there are other plants growing up to disguise the dying leaves of your finished tulips or whichever flower you planted.
Whether you choose to plant bulbs yourself or want some help from Lindsay Landscape, planting bulbs is a great way to plan ahead for an early and colourful start to your gardening season.
I can hardly wait to get out to the garden come spring. The cool spring temperatures mean spending time weeding and tidying up the garden is much more enjoyable. Peeking for green shoots, tender buds on the shrubbery and of course monitoring those daffodil and tulip bulbs that were planted last fall, are all what makes spring gardening my favorite time.
Landscape Ontario is a resource for us and as usual they have some tips here for the eager gardener: http://landscapeontario.com/spring-gardening-tips-for-eager-green-thumbs
Usually I hold off and plant annuals after the May long weekend. I prep and cut back anything I didn’t get to in the fall. This year requires some soil amendments in the veggie garden, so I will do that soon. Of course, I will be careful not to disturb the garlic that has already sprouted up 3 or 4 inches. I noticed this year that my oregano didn’t make it through the winter. I have been lucky in the past with my herbs, even having my thyme survive the winter, but not this year! I will be starting fresh with the herbs, although the chives prove to be hardy as usual!
The other disappointment in the garden this winter was the loss of 2 Dwarf Alberta Spruce trees. Last winter there was some damage but this year did them in. I will have to decide on their replacement. I look forward to a browse through the garden center!
The large garden bed on the corner that we had constructed in 2013 was finally planted last spring. I have been closely monitoring the shrubs, grasses and the weeping crab apple, looking for signs of life or winter damage. I have noticed the lilies I planted along the boulder edge are poking up, which is a relief. I planted them a bit late last year in an effort to fill in along the edge. I’m excited to see how it will look when they start to mature.
I am a big fan of boulders in the garden. I purchased a few last season, two in particular were very large. It turns out these have become a welcome playground to my two grandkids, who enjoy climbing and jumping off in to the mulch. I am okay with that, for what is a garden if it is not enjoyed by all.