Why Bulbs Aren’t Happy Looking Up Annuals Butts…

orange tulipsI was asked by a client the other day if we could plant her annual flowers right over her tulips, with the intent to allow the bulbs to ‘multiply’. I had to pass on bad news. Bulbs and annuals don’t play nicey-nice together. At least not with the selection we have here in the Midwest…

  • Bulbs should be planted at the correct depth for the bulb. If a bulb is planted too deep, to make room for the annual above, it may not grow.
  • Tulip foliage must be allowed to die-back naturally and will make an annual display look a bit messy until the foliage has died back and been removed. If you must prune the leaves back, there’s very little chance you’ll see tulips next Spring.
  • Bulbs, tulips in particular, do not multiply*, rather they disintegrate over time in the ground unless removed after the foliage has died back naturally, are stored properly and replanted in the fall. (Side note: Tulips give 3 years of service, in my opinion.)
  • Annuals planted over bulbs will remove all the nutrients from the surrounding soil leaving the bulb starved.
  • Bulbs need dry conditions, if annuals are planted above bulbs they will rot from the added water annual flowers require.

*Daffodils do multiply, however all the rest of the conditions would not be good for daffodil bulbs either.

 

© The Naturarian

6 thoughts on “Why Bulbs Aren’t Happy Looking Up Annuals Butts…”

  1. our granny learnt that the hard way and her ides of having a four seasons flower bed automatically failed pitiful.. the only thing what grew was wee… well technically mission completed it was there the whole year ;O)

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Our climate (Ballarat, Western District of Victoria Australia) is much milder than yours. We have had Belladonna Lilies (Amaryllis belladonna) in the ground for twenty years and they just keep pushing bach to soil to make room for themselves. In a lawn they will push up but often lose their tops to a lawnmower. Because our winters are quite mild the local gardeners recommend lifting tulips and storing them in the crisper of the fridge.

    Liked by 1 person

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