Our handy guide to spring bulbs you should be planting now
Now is the perfect time to plant spring bulbs for a colourful lift as winter ends. Plant them now while the soil is still moist and warm to give them the best start. Planting bulbs is a great activity for the whole family to enjoy. From daffodils to tulips, snowdrops and crocus, bulbs planted now will create a fantastic display in any border or container. Follow our top tips for a blooming spring!
A beautiful splash of colour early in the year, crocus’ beautiful cup-shaped flowers will provide a beautiful drift to life the spirits. September is the ideal time to plant them for some fantastic displays the following spring. Like snowdrops, crocuses love soil enriched with organic matter with good drainage and look their best naturalised in grass, or under trees. They love full sun or partial shade and will tolerate any soil.
Daffodils are the most well-known and popular spring flower that can grow in full sun or partial shade, and in light, sandy or heavy clay soil. They produce elegant, golden yellow flowers in late winter and early spring which pollinators love and you know spring has truly begun when you see their sunny petals bloom.
Tulips are reliable spring flowers that come in various colours, suitable for any garden setting. They can be bi-colour or tri-colour, striped, curly, double- or single-petaled to suit individual taste. Tulips thrive in well-drained fertile soil and full sun, best planted in October or November.
Alliums with their purple pompom flowers, as members of the onion family love full sun and fertile, well-drained soil. They bloom slightly later in spring but are great for adding depth, height, and texture to flower beds and containers. Bees and other pollinators absolutely love alliums, and it is easy to see why. You can even take them indoors as they make perfect cut flowers in flower arrangements or bouquets.
Fritillaria will grow both in full sun on well-drained soil and in damp areas in full sun or dappled shade and are great companions to other spring bulbs Their spear-shaped leaves and lantern-shaped flowers look beautiful in a natural lawn setting and their distinctive snake-skin markings make them a stand out in spring.
Julian Palphramand, our head of plants, advises that you should plant spring bulbs twice the size and height they are. They should be planted around 10cm below the soil. For the best container display, we recommend you plant a maximum of ten bulbs.
Place your bulbs with their heads pointed up and then fill the container with the compost. Continue to water and firm the compost down. When the shoots start to appear, use a plant food that's high in potash.
After the flowering period, it's best to wait until the leaves die back before taking them out. Doing so will allow the energy to return to the bulbs next year.