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Advice for narcissi/daffodil bulbs needed

Fellow gardeners, I'm in a muddle about bulbs and need advice.
Firstly, narcissi/daffs:

1. If you buy daffs reduced price which have finished flowering, what depth should you plant them?

2. What about if they are just about to flower and clearly grown shallowly? Dig them up after flowering and replant deeper?

3. We're advised to deadhead after flowering so energy doesn't go into seed production but back into building up the bulb. What about the wild daffodil though? I've been planting these 'in the green' and don't know if I should deadhead them after flowering?

4. I've been planting groups of narcissi in our woodland garden for the last couple of years, in the autumn. Two years ago I planted a lot, and the following spring they came up and flowered well. THIS year....most were blind!!! What have I done wrong and can I get them to flower again, or should I dig up and discard? I used Bulb Starter to feed them when planting. I'm gutted because I was looking forward to a good display this year.

Any advice on these problems welcome! Thanks in advance! image:-)


  • Ladybird4Ladybird4 Posts: 36,876

    Let the daffodils that have flowered grow where they are until the leaves have died back and then you can replant them. Don't move the ones about to flower but treat them similarly to the first ones. I dead head my wild daffodils as I would prefer them to grow offsets in their own time rather than set seed.

    For your narcissi in the woods: were they planted deeply enough (soil twice the height of the bulb above them.). You could give them a feed to boost them.

    Cacoethes: An irresistible urge to do something inadvisable
  • nutcutletnutcutlet Posts: 27,312

    Not an expert here but this is how I see it

    1 and 2. I'd keep them in the pots, or put into something a bit bigger, feed them and plant them out as they die down

    3. I never deadhead anything but if you want to create a drift of wild daffs you'll need to let them seed. This only applies to the wild species. Cultivated daffs don't seed true

    4. feeding time for bulbs is when they're in leaf. Then they build up for the next flowering. I'd only feed bulbs in pots or big fancy things (if I had any).  

    Daffs don't flower for long in deep shade but they don't mind some. I had so go blind as over-grown hazel coppice made it very dark. 18months after re-coppicing they flowered again

    In the sticks near Peterborough
  • Busy-LizzieBusy-Lizzie Posts: 22,669

    My daffodils are more likely to be blind if there was a very dry spell after flowering. Last year there were lots of blind ones, but this year they flowered well as last spring was very wet. I dead head my daffodils, but they are cultivated ones. I'd do as Ladybird said about planting them.

    Dordogne and Norfolk. Clay in Dordogne, sandy in Norfolk.
  • Thank you to everyone for your advice :-) I'll feed the blind ones and hope they flower next year. It's a dry spring though, so they might not be getting enough water.

    I thought I'd planted them deeply - but can it be TOO deep perhaps? If so could that be causing the blindness? I'll feed them anyway and hope for the best!

    Is blood, fish and bone OK to feed them or must it be just bonemeal?

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