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Wanting to plant bulbs in containers this year

Posted by kforrest Chicago IL (My Page) on
Mon, Jul 27, 09 at 18:08

Hello there. I'm thinking about planting fall bulbs in my balcony container garden in the fall when my annuals are done.
But I have a few questions.
After the bulbs are done flowering in the spring, how can I reuse the same pots they are in for summer annuals?
Can I dig up the bulbs and store them over the summer somehow?
Could I just leave them in the pots and plant annuals around them? I would cut back all the foilage of course.
Any help would be appreciated.
Thank you

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: Wanting to plant bulbs in containers this year

Being practical, I'll take a direct approach - less work and less chance for failure would be to spend a very few dollars and buy new bulbs (perfectly fine reasonably priced offerings at Home Depot, Lowes, Menard's) each fall.

The bulbs could freeze out in an exposed container over the Chicago winter, or you might lack a cool, dark, dry place in which to store them over the summer should you dig them up once the foliage dies back; the biggest pitfall would be planting annuals over them - the amount of water containerized annuals require would rot the bulbs.

RE: Wanting to plant bulbs in containers this year

I am looking to plant bulbs this fall too. I have a container garden on my roof in Brooklyn. I am worried about the containers freezing, also concerned about the spring wind snapping the flowers if they make it.

Good to hear that you are hunting for balcony/container garden specific bulbs advice. Hopefully we'll find an expert here!

RE: Wanting to plant bulbs in containers this year

planting bulbs or perennials in a container to over winter is a crap shoot. The continual freeze and thaw would kill them. If you want bulbs in containers. Force them in the spring in a pot and then bury the pot in the dirt. When all the fkowers are spent cut off the blooms and lift the pot. Keep in a sunny spot until the foilage dies back and then pull it off and store, pot and all in a cool dark place until the next year. Check out this site on forcing bulbs

RE: Wanting to plant bulbs in containers this year

I dont have the option of putting anything in the ground as I love in a condo and have a large balcony to work with.

RE: Wanting to plant bulbs in containers this year

I wasn't suggesting putting them in the ground. What I meant is to force them in the spring in smaller pots inside and then sink pot and all into your larger pots. When they are finished blooming then you can lift out the pots and plant your annuals.

Cut off any spent flower heads from the tulips and put it in somewhere in the sun for the foliage to die back and then you can store them for the next year. If you don't have the space to let them die back then give them to someone and buy new ones the next year

RE: Wanting to plant bulbs in containers this year

Unless your talking more bulbs than our national deficit, as was said before it would be better to buy them each year. Most bulb places offer pre chilled or fresh dug bulbs. The pre chilled can be planted as soon as you get them and they will start growing. The fresh dug bulbs can be put in an onion bag and placed in the veggie bin of the frig sor several months to get them to grow when planted. Whne they are done blooming,, just chuck them and plant your annuals.

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