ABC Wednesday 4 - D is for...


This may be a gardening blog (of sorts) but that doesn't mean everything's perfection here at VP Gardens. In fact it was described as a 'normal' garden by James in Gardeners' World magazine last month (see sidebar quote to the right) and I think that's a real compliment. As a 'normal' gardener it also means I'm free to write anything about my own experiences - successes or failures - and today I'm 'fessing up to one of the latter, warts and all.

I'm a great one for never getting round to things, but even I'm appalled at how bad I've been at planting out my bulbs for this year's spring display. I finished off planting up the tulips last month and was surprised to find 3 large bags of daffodils hiding at the bottom of the large cardboard box in which I'd been stowing my bulbs in the garage. I was even more surprised to find most of the bulbs are still viable and just beginning to show some shoots. Perhaps there is an upside to having a harsher winter after all - I reckon it's helped to keep these bulbs a little longer rather than having them turn to mush by last November, which is what I would have expected.

Now all I need to do is to get some more compost as I've run out again. The bulbs are giving me some advice on what to do about this as one of them's called Tamara (sorry!). I'll be putting them into pots, so I can plug some of the gaps in both my garden and my guerrilla planting next door once all this snow's melted and the soil's dried out a little. What's the latest you've managed to get away with planting out your bulbs? Did they flower their socks off in spite of everything?

Do hop on over to the ABC Wednesday blog to find oodles of posts on the subject of D.


  1. We've got some daffodils under our willow tree - been there for years now and the always poke through the snow. I think the were actually blooming by the end of February last year and they may well do so this year too.

  2. My niece and nephew gave me some paperwhites for Christmas. When I opened the packet, the bulbs had sprouted - at right-angles, trying to get to the light. When I planted them up they looked very peculiar, and I wasn't very hopeful, but they straightened up within a week and bloomed really well.
    I've often been put off buying bulbs in the garden centre if they've sprouted, but next time I might just go ahead and buy them.

  3. Oh VP, poor things...they are imprisoned.
    How could you?

    Free the prisoners!

    xoxo Tyra

  4. i have a special spot for daffodils as my first name is jonquil (too far north for jonquils to grow well, but the daffys do).

  5. Just can`t waite to see them grow. They are beautiful. Great choise :)

  6. WoW! If they're sprouting they'll likely flower. They'll be lovely to fill in some holes in your garden. ;-)

    MY ABC Wednesday post is at
    More of Me - EG

  7. I love seeing the daffodils peeking through the mesh. I think they are my favorite Spring flower.

  8. I have tulips in the fridge right now hoping I can save them and plant them out...maybe next spring they will flower! Can't wait to see if your bulbs bloom~~gail

  9. I thought that was a bag of crabs. I thought you were posting something about fixing seafood. Doesn't that look like the netting fish comes in?

    Ok, so it's bulbs. Well we can deal with that. Breath deeply. I figure if they can grow in a bag, they do better in the ground. I don't think their main worry is how much mulch you have right now. They would be grateful for anything.

    You know that you signed up to get the freebie at my site. Something very awesome made by me! We.....
    I"m over here snooping around trying to get a feel for you far I haven't seen any.....ah, what I mean by that is that I haven't seen anything inside your house. I was going to send you a decorated watering can so cleverly done but the shipping to the UK was going to be around $70. Uh------

    So I need to see what you like. Don't pay me any attention as i open drawers and look under the rugs.

  10. VP, I'm so glad you "fessed up." I have a few leftover bulbs that I never planted, and I just assumed it was too late to plant them. Now if only the ground wasn't so muddy, I might just stick them in somewhere and see what happens.

  11. This reminds me that I have to find out what the proper thing to when the daffodils get really crowded. We moved here 4 years ago and someone put in tulips and daffodils, but I am not a gardener..but trying to learn...Michelle

  12. I know nothing about gardens and plants except that I'm enamored by their beauty. I'll keep coming here to see what you are doing and what I should do if I expect to learn! Nice post!

  13. I did a mercy trench about three weeks ago into which I tipped everything I hadn't got round to planting. Predictably, they are all coming up. I'm going to have a massive clump of colour...

  14. Daffodils are lovely spring flowers. Most of the time they start flowering in March and you can understand that I was surprised to see a group of them in full bloom in one of the flowerbeds along one of our streets.

  15. VP ... are you sure you are not "enhancing" them to become new characters on Dr. Who ?? the "bulb people" ? ... I'm with Tyra "Free the prisoners !!" LOL

  16. I recently found some daffodil bulbs with shoots coming out too & wonder if I should just stick them in the ground?

  17. I've planted tulips in february and they flowered. I'm ashamed to say that I leave all the bulbs in the ground, never take them out. Tulips disappear after a couple of years. Daffodils keep coming back.
    Great D-entry!

  18. So it's not just me who gets behind with bulb planting and other garden tasks - so reassuring to read your post VP :) I tell myself that the bulbs don't read the books. I think that the latest I have ever got away with it is the end of January.

  19. Haah, haah - I'm glad I'm not the only one who finds random bags of bulbs around the place. I'm quite varied - I do it with vegetable bulbs as well as flowers, I'm not proud!
    I stick 'em in the ground when I find them, regardless of the time of year - if they grow, they grow....and there's always next year -I'll be sure to have found some more by then!

  20. That's me, too. Plus alliums and some other bulbs I am not quite sure of - label lost some time ago. Plant them, you have nothing to lose and may end up with a late display. I need more compost too!

  21. How fortunate that you found the bulbs now. Perhaps they will flower for you. Wintering in the garage probably didn't hurt them at all. Nice "D."

  22. I hope they do well for you -- great photo and choice for your letter this week.

  23. Hi ABCers - I'll hop on over (if I haven't already) to see what you have for your D's today :)

    Victoria - I think they're OK if the bulbs still firm (as mine are), sprouted or not.

    Tyra - they will be freed tomorrow!

    Petoskystone - I have a soft spot for them too.

    Sounds like they'll be OK as long as they stay firm.

    Anna (FGG) - you really crack me! up ;) I think you've left out that nicely plumped cushion over there...

    Ithought they looked a little like crab claws too. The ground's too frozen and wet to plant them out directly yet (which would be my preferred option), so some nice big pots of fresh compost will have to do instead.

    Rose - you could go for the pot them up option if your grounds too muddy...

    Ramblingwoods - for crowded daffodils (or any other crowded bulbs for that matter)you just dig them up carefully replace half in the original spot and plant the others elsewhere where you haven't got any already. Probably best to do it once they've finished blooming.

    Emmat - I wish I'd followed your example 3 weeeks ago - WHY DIDN'T YOU TELL ME? xxx

    Joy - they do look a bit sinister like that don't they? Don't worry, I will be freeing them soon!

    Lily Hydrangea - if your soils not too frozen or wet I'd give it a go. Otherwise go for the potted up method like I'm going to.

    Anna - that's pretty good. December's the latest for me so far. Sounds like I need to do a follow up post or 2 on this topic! Hmm I wonder if I can fit it into E somehow...

    Nutty Gnome - same here!

    Jane - welcome! That's exactly my philosophy :)

    Nancy - thanks. I've a feeling they'll not do too badly :)

  24. How funny VP, your struggling to get yours in, and I've got some bulbs just arriving in the post. I've never had much luck with daffodils, as much as I love them, they never seem to flower. Perhaps the garden is too shady?

  25. Weeeell Sam, I should have planted them last August/September, so bearing in mind our seasons are reversed, it sound like yours are arriving at around the same time! As for your daffodils not doing that well, they need a period of cold. There's speculation here that global warming could see daffodils disappear from these shores, so after your record temperatures the other day, I think the warm Australian climate could be the culprit!

  26. Oh, that's happened to me more than once! I'm terrible at procrastinating!

    But last autumn I actually got on with it and planted hundreds of bulbs. I was going in for surgery early in December, so I had a deadline!

  27. Jay,

    I hope you're well on the road to recovery now. It sounds like you're going to have loads of colour later :)


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