Connecticut Garden Journal: Cold Weather Bulb Gardening

Sep 27, 2018

It's almost October, and time to plants some bulbs. Many gardeners plant tulips, daffodils, crocus, and hyacinths each fall. But some gardeners don't have the space or are tired of dealing with critters digging up or eating their bulbs. One solution is to plant bulbs in a pot.

Spring flowering bulbs are easy to grow in containers. Plant them correctly and store in a cool, dark location in winter, and they'll put on quite a show next spring. Whether you're planting bulbs for forcing indoors this winter or for growing outdoors next spring, the process is the same.

You can plant your container with all one type of bulb, but I like to layer different bulbs in the same container. Layering allows you to enjoy bulbs that bloom at different times in spring. It extends the flower show.

Start with a 12-inch or larger diameter plastic or clay pot. Add a layer of potting soil to the bottom and plant your first layer with large-sized bulbs, such as daffodils, placed about 6- to 8-inches deep. Tuck them in -- almost touching each other. Cover these bulbs with potting soil, then add a layer of tulips, about 4 inches deep, planted the same way. Cover the tulips and add a final layer of crocus, planted only a few inches deep.

Water well and store in a cool, dark shed, garage or basement that doesn't freeze. Any time after four   months in storage, you can bring the pot into a warm room indoors to force, or wait and bring them up in April to grow outside, and enjoy the show.