Question about daffodils

catherinet(5 IN)April 11, 2014

I bought some daffodil bulbs last Fall and planted them pretty late in the season. All my older daffodils are up and blooming, but I'm not even seeing any leaves from the new ones. Do they tend to be pretty slow, or should I be seeing something by now? I'm in zone 5.
I bought them at the end of the season from who knows if they'll grow. But they were still very firm when I planted them.

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Campanula UK Z8

Ah, I once planted some narcissi in early spring. They did shoot and even flower (pitifully)in June and failed to return the following year. Although bulbs are definitely the gardeners friends inasmuch as they are completely self-contained little flower machines, requiring little such as nutrients, water or even anchoring material (soil) - they are not always foolproof. They may come up blind (flowerless) or even rot in the soil.....and yours may have done this since they need warm early autumn soil to initiate roots. To be honest, at this stage, you have nothing to lose by doing a bit of exploratory digging to see if any bulb material remains.....because at this time, most of the narcissi are going over, having pushed shoots above ground over 4 months ago. If, miraculously, the bulbs are still intact, leave them - they may (or may not) flower next year, if the soil is not too moist.

    Bookmark   April 12, 2014 at 7:51AM
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diggerdee zone 6 CT

I would think you should be seeing something by now. Were they late daffs? I grow some late daffs but I think they are even poking up a bit at least by now. I don't think the planting time should be a problem - I've planted daffodils in January during warm spells and they've grown.

I think I would give them a bit more time - you are in zone 5, and if you are like most other parts of the country, winter is barely gone, if not still lingering. I still had snow on the ground in spots just last week, and still see patches of it around town in wooded or sunless spots, so spring is slow to come this year. I suppose if you are careful you could do a bit of digging to see if they are rotted or not, but that is up to you.

Good luck! I hope you get to enjoy some blooms soon!


    Bookmark   April 12, 2014 at 11:10AM
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It may be that the bulbs were dead and dried out when you bought them.
Wal-Mart is probably never going to be the best place to buy anything alive.

    Bookmark   April 12, 2014 at 2:20PM
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catherinet(5 IN)

Thanks everyone.
I knew I shouldn't buy these packaged things from Walmart at the end of the season. I knew it was pretty risky. But I'll just wait and see if they're just slow starters.
I'm always amazed at the things some stores try to sell, months and months after they are brought out. There's a sucker born every minute.........and I'm one of them! haha
Thanks again!

    Bookmark   April 12, 2014 at 4:39PM
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ken_adrian Adrian MI cold Z5

how deep did you plant them ...

and then go dig a hole near the area.. and find out how cold the soil is at that depth ...

my soil isnt very warm yet in MI ... a few inches down ... but i dont know where you are in the vast area called z5

patience is its own reward... and do let us know ...


    Bookmark   April 12, 2014 at 5:01PM
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diggerdee zone 6 CT

Don't be too hard on yourself! Sometimes those bargains on the shelf late in the season are mighty tempting, and sometimes they pay off! I would give it more time - it just may be too cold yet in your zone.

Good luck!

    Bookmark   April 12, 2014 at 10:13PM
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- If your bulbs were firm and had weight to them when you planted them they should be alive and will be sending shoots up above the ground sometime soon.
Last autumn I planted three different daffs from quality suppliers, planted them in mid October, and they are just now beginning to show the tips of their leaves. There are clumps of old established daffodils out in my garden that are budded and ready to bloom in a day or two. I see that you are in the same climate zone, if your winter was anything like it was here, the ground may still be thawing out it was so cold for so long! Newly planted bulbs will almost always bloom later than the established ones, although I was beginning to worry about my little group of new daffs until this week when I looked under the mulch and dug around a bit gently with my hands - they look like they all made it - and something tells me all of yours made it through the winter too, you'll just have to be a little more patient.

    Bookmark   April 13, 2014 at 7:30AM
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I think buying them on clearance is still OK but just know the warnings. At the same time, if you can't resist another clearance sale, then plant them in containers first. This way, it's easier to verify their status. If they do grow, then the following autumn, plant them in your yard (or plant them as they are sprouting so that they'll spend the spring time in their new permanent home)

    Bookmark   April 14, 2014 at 3:51PM
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katob Z6ish, NE Pa

Same thing as jebfarm said, give them more time. I have some blooming, yet the late planted ones are not up yet. They are always late the first year.

But..... Good thing you checked the bulbs for firmness. I was just at one of the Marts yesterday and took a look at their spring bulb display. All kinds of crocus daffs tulips and even amaryllis kits. All rolled out for spring and all dried up, hollow, and dead from last fall. A guarantee for failure.

    Bookmark   April 16, 2014 at 6:38PM
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My Mt. Hood daff leaves are just peeking above the soil. You don't say where you are from, and you don't say what kind they are, but I would also give them more time. Give us a photo when they bloom!

    Bookmark   April 16, 2014 at 7:33PM
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