Fall Garden Projects: Plant a Spring Container Garden

Bulbs for Containers anemone blanda leucojum crocus Crocus Tulip Narcissus - Daffodil muscari hyacinth Iris reticulataDutch Iris Hyacinth

Anyone can make a beautiful container garden!

Growing bulbs and plants in containers is becoming more popular, the possibilities are limitless. Looking at pictures is a great way to get ideas for plant combinations and color schemes. To enjoy the dramatic display, put containers where you’ll see them daily: by doorways, next to the garage or driveway, by the mailbox or lamp post, along walkways or right outside your kitchen window. Spectacular!


Anemone blanda


• Galanthus

Hyacinthus (hyacinth)

Iris hollandica (Dutch iris)

Iris reticulata

Leucojum aestivum


Narcissus (daffodil)

Tulipa (tulip)

Tips and tricks for Success:

Containers: You can almost use any container to make a beautiful container garden. The size, shape and color can dramatically affect the look. Avoid containers with narrow openings and make sure that it has a drainage hole. Be noticed that terra cotta containers dry out rapidly.


Drainage: Good drainage is vital. Place crocks over the hole and a good layer of roughage, such as decayed leaves over the crocks to retain moisture and prevent the soil from clogging the drainage hole after watering.


Soil: Make sure your planting medium drains rapidly, mix in garden peat and some bulb booster. Be sure that the soil is pressed down gently but not packed and that the soil is in a moist but not wet condition.


Planting: Bulbs and plants can be planted much closer together in containers than in the garden. Look at the packaging for the correct planting depth and space them 1-2 inches apart. Always water well after planting and provide protection from frost or place containers inside. (In order to flower, most spring-blooming bulbs require a chilling period of 8 to 14 weeks at temperatures between 35° and 40° F. To simulate the effect of winter, place container in a cool, dark place such as an unheated, frost-free basement, garage, or porch. A spare refrigerator is an ideal spot, but keep bulbs away from fruits or vegetables; they give off ethylene gas, which can cause the bud inside a bulb to abort. After six to eight weeks of chilling, green shoots should begin to emerge. If you live in a mild climate, this should coincide with the emergence of bulbs in outdoor beds. If you live in a cold-winter region, keep the containers in their cool place until you wish to encourage growth then bring them into your home, patio or porch and enjoy the growing and flowering. For long lasting enjoyment bring them out from the cooling area in stages, you will enjoy weeks of flowers.)


• To obtain a longer flowering period plant several layers of bulbs and plants see the Layering with Bulbs tab.