The Q&A Archives: Preparing Bulbs

Question: I've just purchased a bunch of bulbs and read that I should refrigerate them for about 6-8 weeks and then plant them. Is this correct? How should I store them in the fridge? When I plant them should I fertilize them then or wait until spring when they start to grow? Will they start to grow right after I plant in November?

Answer: Bulbs need a winter chill to prepare them for spring bloom. Since you don't normally have a pronounced winter, placing your bulbs in the refrigerator will trick them into thinking they've experienced winter. After taking them out of cold storage, plant them in the ground (November). The roots will develop after you've planted them (it takes 8-10 weeks for root development). Once the bulb has developed roots, it will produce foliage. Two or three weeks later it will bloom.

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