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Planting bulbs

Mary370Mary370 Limerick, Ireland Posts: 2,003
I've bought lots of summer flowering bulbs this year.  Is it advisable to put grit in the hole first then place the bulb on top?  I have an feeling this is what Monty advised in one of his broadcasts.

Posts

  • DampGardenManDampGardenMan Posts: 1,054
    Depends on the underlying soil. If it's clay, and thus doesn't drain very well, you might just end up creating a sump in which water will sit and rot your bulbs.
  • Hostafan1Hostafan1 Posts: 31,604
    Depends on the underlying soil. If it's clay, and thus doesn't drain very well, you might just end up creating a sump in which water will sit and rot your bulbs.
    Couldn't agree more @DampGardenMan. MD often suggests grit in the bottom to aid drainage, but I agree with you , it's just going to collect all the water into the bottom of the hole.
    Devon.
  • LynLyn DevonPosts: 19,901
    I put grit underneath some bulbs to protect them from slugs and other similar pests. 
    Gardening on the wild, windy west side of Dartmoor. 

  • StevedaylillyStevedaylilly Posts: 1,087
    Hi Mary

    What sort of soil do you have ?
    If it is clay, then then most plant that require a well drained soil will suffer 
    Obviously, apply large amounts of manure, compost and grit to improve humus levels and drainage to clay 
    Most gardens that are clay soil, including my own,  will have the same problems with insufficient drainage for plants to survive. But over years of cultivating my soil I have a humus rich well drained soil 
    This does not answer your question but personally, I would apply grit to the compost when you plant your bulbs so effectively the complete planting hole is well drained 


  • DampGardenManDampGardenMan Posts: 1,054
    A question to ask, I suppose, is, are there any bulbs (or tubers) that are happy to sit in waterlogged soil? Something might have evolved to fill this niche ...
  • ButtercupdaysButtercupdays Posts: 3,997
    Wood anemones - mine have self seeded into a very boggy patch fed by a spring. Snowdrops, daffodils and camassias don't mind damp soil, but they aren't actually aquatic.
    Some tulips have surprised me by surviving in a trough completely waterlogged by a faulty gutter and still have firm bulbs and are growing well.
  • Mary370Mary370 Limerick, Ireland Posts: 2,003
    @greenfingers steve thanks I think I'll mix some grit in the planting mixture 
  • DampGardenManDampGardenMan Posts: 1,054
    Wood anemones - mine have self seeded into a very boggy patch fed by a spring.
    Excellent, I love wood anemones! I've just planted two (purchased) clumps, one on a shady bank and one under some trees. I was thinking "wood", so not too light and not too wet! Hopefully they'll be fine where I've put them, but if they also do in boggy conditions that's great as we have definitely got boggy ground that we need to fill!

    I have been thinking about Zantedeschia for boggy ground, but am not too sure about their hardiness? I'll start another thread to discuss this.

    But good news about the wood anems!
  • ButtercupdaysButtercupdays Posts: 3,997
    When we were kids, my brother and I used to play in a little wood near home. There were coppiced hazels and the soil was clay. A little steam ran through and used to flood the area (sometimes helped by our attempts at dam building) and every spring it was thick with wood anemones in a white carpet. Looked wonderful.
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