Photo by Jason Baker

Crystal Kim’s Daffodil Planting Tips

Every spring, over 250,000 daffodil’s bloom across Red Butte Garden, blanketing the hillside in their sunny hues. Crystal Kim, garden horticulturist, shares her tips for these drought-tolerant, virtually pest-free mark of springtime.

• Select bulbs that are firm and free of white mold (some blue-gray mold

is okay and does not affect growth). Discard any soft, moldy bulbs.

• Plant bulbs in the fall when the soil temperature has cooled below 54°F

but hasn’t frozen yet. Along the Wasatch Front, bulbs can be planted

through October and even into November, depending on weather.

• Locate daffodils in any deep, well drained soil in full sun. Planting

beneath deciduous trees is okay if the trees leaf out after the bulbs have finished

for spring and if tree roots don’t interfere with planting.

• Plant daffodil bulbs at a depth two to three times the diameter of the bulb,

which is usually about 6-8 inches deep. Space bulbs about three times

the width of the bulb apart so that they have plenty of room to get established

and multiply.

• Position the bulbs pointed side up. Thetop of the bulb, from which the shoot

emerges, is more narrow and pointed than the base. The base is rounded,

with some of the previous year’s dried, hair-like roots attached to its somewhat

flattened bottom.

• Fertilize only if you have very poor soil. If you do use fertilizer, mix it into the

soil at the bottom of the hole before planting the bulbs.

• If planting during a dry autumn, make sure to irrigate your bulbs well, since

roots start growing in fall. The cool weather of the fall season is great for

growing roots.

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