Storing spring bulbs

It seems that this year, due to our incredibly mild and wet Winter, the Spring bulbs in our garden have started to bloom even earlier than usual. It usually begins with the delicate snowdrop, then the buds of the crocus, before our garden is full of numerous shades of yellow daffodils and, coming in last, are the tulips.

However, what should you do with your bulbs once everything has bloomed? Leave all alone for at least 6 weeks, before you start mowing over them or cutting back the leaves. As soon as flowering has finished and, while the leaves are still green, apply a general fertiliser around the base of the leaves. This will help to replenish the bulb with food and nutrients for next Spring. Remove faded flower heads. You can leave bulbs growing in your lawn or in pots and, only lift bulbs that you need to. Once the foliage has yellowed and died down, dig up the bulbs carefully and clean them of soil. Peel back any outer flaky layers and trim any roots. Lay the bulbs on a wooden tray or in a wooden crate for 24 hours to dry out and then dust with sulphur which is available from garden centres. This will help to prevent any fungal diseases from developing. Store the bulbs in paper bags or nets in a dry place and they will be ready for re-planting in the Autumn.

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