Planting Crocus

Q: I just received a gift of potted Crocus. Of course, I hope to be able to plant these outside, and I am curious as to the best way to do this. The ground is frozen right now obviously. Do I plant them in spring right from the pot or is there some special care I should take?

Hardiness Zone: 5a

Thanks for all help. :)
Leslie from Barrie, Ontario

A: Leslie,

You can plant your crocus bulbs in the spring or wait until fall and plant them as though they were new bulbs. The longer you keep the plants green this spring, the stronger the bulbs will be going into next year.

After they bloom, cut the flower stems back. When the leaves turn yellow and start to die back, reduce watering. Once the leaves die back altogether, discontinue watering and let the soil dry out. Remove the bulbs from the pot and trim off the dead foliage.

Store the bulbs in a cool, dry place until fall. Mesh or paper bags work best to prevent bulbs from getting moldy. In the fall, plant the bulbs 3-4 inches deep in full sun. They may be a bit undersized or flower poorly the first year, but they should come back fine the second year.

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February 24, 20060 found this helpful

Years ago on a radio plant show, I heard the advice that if it blooms in the spring, plant it in the fall. If it blooms in the fall, plant it in the spring. Either way, your crocus will bloom. The first year in the ground might just be greens but next year the blooms will come. I'm also a zone 5 person and have luck with crocus, except when the squirrels get at the bulbs.

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February 24, 20060 found this helpful

Leslie, I didn't answer all questions you asked. Yes, you can take them out of the pot and plant them right in the ground. No special needs. Even if you plant the bulbs upside down, they'll still grow towards the top. If I couldn't tell which way was the top, I planted them sideways. They still grew!

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March 17, 20060 found this helpful

I always plant my forced spring bulbs or East flowers in the spring rather than waiting until fall. It doesnt seem to hurt them... and I dont risk forgetting about them or having to store them.. It just seems easier for me...

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