bordera
Newly Registered
Posts: 4
Joined: Sun Oct 23, 2005 5:04 pm

how to care for potted bulbs?

I live in a condo, and I just potted some bulbs for the spring.

A lady in the bulb section at the store said that the only thing I should worry about is if the temperature goes below 0F. In this case she advised wrapping the pots in bubble wrap or something for added insulation, but not to bring them inside. Would you agree? Given that it often goes above 60 to 70F in the winter here, as well as, below freezing, I don't see why it would hurt to put them in my front hall over night if it does go below 0F??? My hall does not have a heat vent, so although it is warmer than outside, it is usually 50F on a cold winter day.

Also, do I need to water them? They will have a porch deck directly overhead, so although they will get some precipitation blown in, they are not likely to get a lot.

They will get sun, as the winter angle shines under the deck all day.

Any other words of advice for potted bulbs?

The Helpful Gardener
Mod
Posts: 7493
Joined: Tue Feb 10, 2004 2:17 am
Location: Colchester, CT

I guess my question would be why not plant them? Are you concerned about rodents? Certainly makes them a lot easier if they are in the ground...

Bringing them inside and watering them arte both likely to trigger early blooming, so that lady at the garden center was basically right. Don't go there if you can help it.

I'd probably put the lot in a box stuffed with straw or styrofoam peanuts and close it up for the winter. Don't water until spring thaw, and then maybe some bulb booster (or bone meal) as well... OR...

Bring 'em in, force them so you get a beautiful flower in winter and plant the bulbs in spring. What better time for fresh flowers than the depths of winter...?

bordera
Newly Registered
Posts: 4
Joined: Sun Oct 23, 2005 5:04 pm

I live in a condo with no yard, therefore I have no soil to plant the bulbs in...
However, I decided that I would like a little spring color to put on my deck, so I potted some bulbs. I would like them to bloom in the spring as normal, but since they are in pots and not the ground I don't know if I need to manually water them, as they won't get any natural precipitation.

Thanks :)

opabinia51
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Posts: 4659
Joined: Thu Oct 21, 2004 9:58 pm
Location: Victoria, BC

I would place the pots against a wall, away from the railing of your deck where they will be sheltered. The soil should be reasonably damp when the bulbs are planted. You can also cover the pots with straw or possibly a tarp to provide further insulation.

I wouldn't actually water them (other than to keep the soil moist (check it weekly)) until early spring.

The Helpful Gardener
Mod
Posts: 7493
Joined: Tue Feb 10, 2004 2:17 am
Location: Colchester, CT

Even weekly watering would be too much; bulbs are basically storage for water and sugars the plant needs to make its start in spring. Hydrating it is one of the run-ups to flowering, so leaving things a bit dry cuts down on the possibility of fungus and helps keep that growing trigger in check (a most important consideration now that seasonal temperatures are all over the map)

HG

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