How to Grow Spring Bulbs in Containers

Fancy Daffodil Bulbs from my family's farm
Fancy Daffodil Bulbs from my family’s farm

“I was very excited to have some Daffodil bulbs, and couldn’t wait to get them planted. Being in a rental, a container garden of bulbs was the perfect option.”

If you missed the Fall bulb planting season it isn’t too late to enjoy a plethora of Spring bulbs in your garden. Bulbs grow just as well in containers and are ideal for people without yard space or in rental properties (so you can keep the bulbs for the following seasons).

This Christmas my Dad gave me a wonderful gift of Daffodil bulbs cultivated from the Pendergrass family farm. He dug up the bulbs, cleaned them up and bagged them into two varieties – Fancy Daffodils and Plain Daffodils. I kept the bags in a cool, dark place but they were already sprouting in anticipation of Spring.

Daffodil Bulbs
Daffodils have always been some of my favorite Spring flowers, and grew in abundance on farms on both sides of my family. I was very excited to have the bulbs, and couldn’t wait to get them planted. Being in a rental, a container garden of bulbs was the perfect option.

To begin a container garden of bulbs you will need:
1. Your bulbs of choice (sprouted but still in tight bud)
2. Containers/Pots of your choice with good drainage
3. Quality Potting Soil with fertilizer*
4. Watering implement
5. Gardening Gloves (optional)

Pot bulbs on a day with full sun and nice weather, and let the pots sit in the sun when finished.
First, loosely pack soil about 2/3 full into pots. Leave at least 4-5 inches empty space in the pot.
Second, gently nestle bulbs point side up into the soil with just the tips sticking out.

Bulb Point Up

Third, loosely pack additional soil on top of the bulbs to fill the pot. (Your bulb will produce larger, fuller blossoms if it is planted deeply.)
Fourth, water thoroughly, ensuring adequate drainage from the pot.

Watering Bulbs
Finally, you will need to ensure your bulbs are properly weathered. If the bulbs have been indoors, at your home or the gardening center, they will need time to acclimate to the weather. On warmer days (high 40s and above), sit pots outside in the sun. If the evenings are warm enough pots can be left outside in a sheltered area. Keep bulbs away from too cold temperatures, heavy rains and snow. You may need to bring the pots inside occasionally for the first one to two weeks depending on the weather. If in doubt, bring them indoors.

Once the bulbs are blooming through the soil they will be happy in the sunshine. Happy planting!

*I use Miracle Grow Potting Soil and there are Organic varieties now. I know some people are dissuaded by the corporate image around it, but I have always had the best growing success with Miracle Grow- best blossoms, best veggies, etc. My Mom backed this up with experiments in her Botany class back in the day. Miracle Grow has always given me the best results.

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