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Caring for Potted Tulips, Daffodils, Hyacinths and Other Spring Flowering Bulbs Once the Flowers Fade

You received a gift of potted tulips, daffodils, hyacinths or other spring flowering bulbs. But now the flowers have faded and you’re not sure what to do.

The easiest option is to place them in the compost pile. But If you’re like many gardeners you want to try to grow them in your garden.

In that case, remove the spent flower stems and move the container to a sunny window.  Keep watering thoroughly whenever the top few inches of soil are slightly moist and apply a dilute solution of any flowering houseplant fertilizer.

Once the soil warms and the danger of frost has passed, you can plant the bulbs outside in the garden or store them in a cool dark location for summer and plant in fall.  Those in milder climates will have to give the bulbs a chill before planting in late fall or winter. It often takes two years before forced bulbs bloom in the garden.

A bit more information:  Tulips and hyacinths perform best in sunny areas with well-drained soils.  Daffodils will grow in sun or shade and a variety of soil types.  Plant the bulbs 2 to 3 times the bulb’s height deep and water thoroughly.  It may be two years before you have flowers.

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