Types Of Soil For Bulbs - Knowledgebase Question

Springfield, VA
Question by jdombrow
September 28, 2004
I decided to start a new bulb garden this fall. I am planting Lavender Mountain Lilies on the sides, Snap Dragons behind, and a mixture of Narcissus Dutch Master Daffodils and Eye of the Tiger Dutch Iris in the front center area. I am planting in moderately draining raised beds of primarily clay and whatever I find to mix into it. What type of soil is best for these bulbs and what type of mulch would you recommend?

Answer from NGA
September 28, 2004


Your new garden is going to be delightful when it begins to bloom! Planting in raised beds is helpful if your soil is heavy and doesn't drain well because you can amend the soil in your raised bed with all kinds of organic matter prior to planting. I'd spread a 3-4" layer of compost, aged-manure or shredded leaves over the top of the bed and dig it in to a depth of 6-8" then plant the bulbs. After planting you can spread another 2-3" layer of organic matter over the top of the bed. This mulch material will help suppress weeds, slow moisture evaporation and stop soil erosion over the winter months.

Best wishes with your new bulb garden!

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