Bulb watering

gunsrdNovember 17, 2013

I have a few questions about watering newly planted bulbs in beds and containers. I watered all of them thoroughly after planting them. Should I keep watering them every few days or leave them without watering till leaves begin to come. Below are bulbs and where they are planted.

1) Allium bulbs in beds
2) Tulips in beds
3) Hyacinths in beds
4) Tulips in containers
5) Hyacinths in containers

Thanks :)

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Depends :-)

Don't mean to be flippant, but it really does depend on your soil conditions and the weather. Generally, once planted in the ground in average, well-drained soil, spring flowering bulbs need no additional watering. If the weather is extraordinarily warm and it remains very dry or if you have very fast draining, sandy soil, the occasional irrigation may be appropriate.

Containers are a bit different. They dry out easier and much faster than does garden soil so you may need to keep an eye on them and water as needed. In general, most spring bulbs are going to prefer dry conditions but excessive dryness will hamper root development and proper growth. Soils should not be bone dry or excessively wet but just barely moist to the touch.

    Bookmark   November 17, 2013 at 4:02PM
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Thank you, very helpful :). The soil is well draining, and the days have been sunny with chilly nights. I'll try watering the ones in ground occasionally

The soil in the containers is bone dry. I'll monitor it to make it moist.

    Bookmark   November 18, 2013 at 2:39AM
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vetivert8(NI-NZ zone 9a)

If you haven't done so already, suggest you use pot feet under your pots so water doesn't stay too long at the bottom.

You said 'newly planted' and 'watered in' - yet the mix in your containers is bone dry.

You might need to use a soil wetting preparation and 'double water' to ensure the mix is rehydrating.

Double watering - use something like a gallon milk container and warm water (not hot. About the temperature you'd bathe a baby in). Slowly pour it over the surface - about half of the water - and leave the pot to drain over 15 to 20 minutes. You may need to put a drip tray under it because a lot of the water will simply swish through the dry mix.

After the wait, slowly pour on the remaining water.

When it has sunk into the mix - check to see how far down it has soaked. More than two inches is essential.

If your pots are moderately small, and they fit easily into a bucket, fill the bucket with water to about a third and let the pot stand for about five minutes. Gradually add more water until water covers the surface of the soil. Expect lots of bubbles.

Leave for about ten minutes - until the bubbles stop.

Take out the pot and leave it to drain. Before putting it back in its display area tilt the pot to one side so more water can drain out.

Now that the mix has been wetted it will be much easier to top up the moisture content when the top couple of inches are barely moist.

    Bookmark   November 24, 2013 at 11:41PM
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Thank you for the excellent tips. It rained for a few days after my post. I will try your suggestions if weather goes back to being dry.

    Bookmark   November 26, 2013 at 3:19AM
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