Top Tips for Planting Bulbs from Clifton Nurseries

Top Tips for Planting Bulbs

Clifton Nurseries's picture
Posted Sep 5th, 2019
by Clifton Nurseries

Bulbs are easy to grow and are ideal for bringing colour to beds, borders and containers. Courtesy of our Jack from the London branch, here are our top tips for planting bulbs!

When to Plant Bulbs

  • Plant Spring-flowering bulbs in Autumn - Daffodils, Snowdrops and Crocuses in September, and Tulips a little later
  • Plant Summer-flowering bulbs in Spring
  • Plant Autumn-flowering bulbs in Summer

Remember that different types and varieties of bulbs will flower at different times so check the packaging and consider this when mixing for displays.

Where to Plant Bulbs

Tulips - ideal for Spring colourMost bulbs need good drainage; we recommend using bulb fibre or multipurpose compost for containers. If you’re planting your bulbs in beds or borders (particularly in dense London clay) it’s often necessary to add compost and/or grit.

The RHS recommend groups of around 5 or 6, and at least 25-30 bulbs to create an impressive display.

How you lay out your bulbs is totally up to you and your personal preferences. You may want to plant them in lines, in circles or in pretty much any design! For a natural planting style, take handfuls of bulbs, throw them down and then plant them wherever they land.


How to Plant Bulbs

  1. Make a hole (use a bulb planter, stick or finger) wide enough for the bulb, and to a depth of approx 3 times the size of the bulb (e.g. 15cm deep for a 5cm bulb)

  2. Leave a space between the holes of about 2 or 3 times the bulb-width in borders and beds, and 1 bulb-width apart in containersBulbs, bulbs ...... and lightbulbs!

  3. Place bulbs with their pointed ends facing upwards

  4. Replace the soil firmly, but not too much as this can damage the bulbs

  5. Water after planting if the soil or compost is dry

Looking after Bulbs

  • To help bulbs in containers prepare for next year, feed with tomato food once a week, starting when the shoots appear and stopping when the foliage starts dying back.
  • Never cut plants back until the flowers and foliage have died back as the bulb gets its energy source from them for next year’s growth and flowers.  

Bulbs at Clifton Nurseries

The new ranges of Spring bulbs are now in stock at both of our branches, including many new and exciting varieties! 

Spring bulbs now in stock at Clifton Nurseries


About the author

Clifton Nurseries - inspiring, designing, building and supplying the most beautiful gardens