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Daffodils: lots of foliage, no blooms. :(

Posted by blooming_in_zone5 5-6 (My Page) on
Wed, May 5, 10 at 22:23

Several years ago I planted a dozen daffodil bulbs around a small tree near the road in front of my house. The first few years they gave me lots of pretty flowers, but last year there were 2-3 and this year none at all. Loads of lush green stuff, though. The few tulips that are among them did bloom.
Do they need fertilizer? Should I divide them?
Is there a way to tell daffodil bulbs from tulips? (lol)
Daffy-less JoAnn in upstate NY.

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: Daffodils: lots of foliage, no blooms. :(

I have had similar blooming problems with daffodils. Moving them to a place with more sun solved the blooming problem. I have never fertilized Daffodils and do not think it would help them bloom. Al

RE: Daffodils: lots of foliage, no blooms. :(

I don't know much about them just what I have experienced. That said I think it could be the bulbs may be to close together. Some of mine that are in clumps or are close together wont bloom very much. I also agree with calistoga moving them to get more sun might help. I have some that do great in the sun and some that prefer to be in more shaded areas. I don't know much about tulips either but the most noticeable difference for me is tulips have wide leaf foliage and daffodils are more narrow. As for the bulbs I really don't know maybe the tulip is more round than the daffodil bulb.

RE: Daffodils: lots of foliage, no blooms. :(

Hi blooming_in_zone5,

Welcome to The Bulb Forum.

I doubt if it is too much shade, in your zone anyway, if they are around a deciduous tree anyway as opposed to an evergreen. A lot of my daffs are planted in the deciduous woods and do just fine as they come up and are either finished blooming or near finished when the leaves come on.

I am more inclined to believe that they are crowded and need divided.

I for one, never fertilize my daffs, due mostly to lack of time and energy, but I imagine they would benefit from being fertilized.

There are numerous reasons why they may not have bloomed...please see link below.

You can either dig them once the foliage has died back (6-8 weeks after normal bloom time and 8 weeks is best), and then reset them, or else you can cure (dry) dry them and store in an airy place until proper time in your area when the soil temps have cooled. I think that storing until fall planting is best as that is what Daff Society folks always advise.

Is there a way to tell daffodil bulbs from tulips?
Probably not to the untrained eye (you), once the foliage has dioes back a lot.
As daffgirl said above, the foliage on a tulip is much wider than daff foliage. Since you should wait until the foliage has died back on both the daffs and the tulips, you could maybe mark one or the other with string tied around the foliage, or some Surveyor tape which is available at hardware stores.

chemocurl...aka Sue

Here is a link that might be useful: Daffodils Not Blooming?-per the American Daffodil Society

RE: Daffodils: lots of foliage, no blooms. :(

Thank you all so much for the responses. :)
I usually plant cosmo seeds under that same tree around this time, and I love my cosmos. So I'm wondering if I can dig up the bulbs now, with foliage intact and let them resume their cycle in the dark garage. Hopefully that won't hurt them. Then I'll separate and replant them in the fall.
I love spring. :)

RE: Daffodils: lots of foliage, no blooms. :(

Hopefully that won't hurt them. Then I'll separate and replant them in the fall.
It shouldn't hurt them, but it may sacrifice some blooms next spring. Either way, it might take an extra season for most of them to grow to blooming size and bloom anyway.

Sue...who also loves cosmos

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