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Northumberland , United Kingdom Gb

Hello All

The soil in our garden is truly dreadful - it's as hard as nails and full of large stones.
My questions are -
1) Am I too late to plant some bulbs?
2) Will they have the strength to grow through the dense heavy soil?

With thanks



Hi Holly, suggest you buy some pond baskets and fill them with decent compost and put he bulbs into them. Then dig holes wider and deeper tun you need and put compost in so that when the roots leave the basket they'll still get fed. Remember to let the leaves die back naturally an water with half strength tomato food once the flower(s) go over. Yes it is a little late to plant bulbs but it is so mild they will probably do okay!

14 Nov, 2016


Its OK to plant tulips in November Holly and you can get early, mid season and late varieties. If the soil is even too hard to take up Moongrower's helpful suggestion you could get a few containers - you can get plastic ones quite cheaply, and plant bulbs in those. Then when the leaves have died back later in the spring you can add the potting compost to the first bit of ground you have a go at improving. Meanwhile compost every bit of organic stuff you can find.

14 Nov, 2016


Keep in mind that potted bulbs must be protected from freezing or they won't make it.

15 Nov, 2016


Hello Folks

Thank you for your advice (I'm sorry I am always late to do this but I don't get an automatic reminder email that I have had a response....).

We have had a some hard frosts lately and the bulbs still aren't planted! Can I just put them into some plant pots and put them in the garage to protect them from more frosts?
Or will they keep if I simply don't plant them this year?


23 Nov, 2016


Plant them asap Holly. If they are outdoor bulbs there will be no need to put them in the garage - in the UK our spring bulbs will survive a lot of frost without coming to harm as long as the container doesn't remain frozen solid for days on end - pretty unlikely here. If you try to store them unplanted they will die anyway so you have nothing to lose. Bathgate is used to New York winters which are a lot harder than ours.

Use larger containers than plant pots though as they won't freeze nearly as easily. You could put them in the garage if you want to but keep an eye on them and make sure they are in the light once they get going.

23 Nov, 2016


Hello Steragram

Thanks for your advice; I think I am going to have to put them in containers and put them in the garage (we are in Scotland and it does get mighty cold up here).

If I just make sure to put them outside when they start to show - would that be alright or would that be a bit like forcing them? (because I suppose the garage might be marginally warmer than being in the ground).


23 Nov, 2016


Do you have light in your garage Holly, the bulbs will want to start growing well before the frosts are over, indeed ours are already doing so. If there is no light in the garage they will become drawn, personally I'd still get them into the ground but it is really rather late now to be planting bulbs at all.

23 Nov, 2016

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