Daffodils – The 10 Best Care Tips

Daffodils - The 10 Best Care Tips

Next to tulips, daffodils are the most popular spring flowers. Here you can read how to properly plant daffodil bulbs and what you need to do to ensure that the bulb flowers come back every year.

Plant daffodils properly

Daffodils perform the early flowering miracle because the flower sprouts from a bulb. The basic prerequisite for the process is professional planting at the right time. In these steps it succeeds:

  • Loosen the soil thoroughly in September/October in a sunny to partially shaded location
  • Make small planting pits 15-20 cm (6-7 inches) apart, with a thin layer of sand at the bottom
  • Improve the excavation with compost, guano, and horn shavings
  • Insert one onion at a time with the tip pointing upwards
  • The ideal planting depth is two to three times the radius of the bulb

Plant the flower in small tuffs with 5-9 specimens and then water generously.

daffodils care tips

The clear care program for daffodils includes these recommendations:

  • Water the flower when it is dry
  • Fertilize organically from March until the end of the flowering period
  • Add liquid fertilizer for flowering plants to the irrigation water in the pot every 14 days
  • Clean out faded flower heads

When the flower has finished its bloom festival for the season, give the bulb ample time to absorb the remaining nutrients from the leaves. Only then cut off the foliage close to the ground. Please don’t forget the gloves.

Which location is suitable?

If you take into account your sunny disposition when choosing the location, daffodils will shine in all their glory in the spring sun. The flower is also impressive in partial shade.To prevent violent spring storms from buckling the stems, we recommend a wind-protected location.

The right planting distance

Where multiple daffodils congregate, they form small islands of vernal opulence. Therefore plant the flower in small tuffs with 5-9 specimens at a planting distance of 15-20 centimeters (6-7 inches).

What soil does the plant need?

Daffodils feel at home in normal garden soil. The following attributes are beneficial:

  • Nutritious and humic
  • Fresh, moist, with good drainage
  • Neutral to slightly acidic pH

What is the best planting time?

In order for daffodils to fulfill their task as spring heralds on time, the right planting time is important. If you plant the bulbs in September or October, the bright yellow and white trumpet flowers will be there in time.

When do Daffodils Bloom?

Daffodils bloom from February to May. However, a single flower does not have such staying power. If you combine varieties with early, medium, and late flowering, the splendor of spring will blend seamlessly into one another. The following arrangement may serve as inspiration:

  • February Gold: flowering period from mid-February to early April
  • Ice Follies: flowering period from March to April
  • Golden Ducat: April flowering period
  • Thalia: flowering period from April to May

Cut daffodils properly

There are several occasions to cut daffodils. The following brief overview also gives you tips on how to proceed correctly:

  • Cut daffodils to decorate vases when the buds have just opened
  • Cut wilted flower heads to avoid seed formation
  • After flowering, do not cut the foliage until it has completely withered

watering daffodils

Daffodils prefer changing soil moisture with intermittent drying periods. Water the flower like this:

  • If the surface of the earth dries, it is poured
  • Do not sprinkle the flower with water, instead water it directly at the roots
  • Check the moisture content of the soil in the bucket daily with a thumb test

Do not leave water in the trivet for a long period of time, as waterlogging inevitably leads to onion rot.

Fertilize daffodils properly

Daffodils are among the weak eaters, so their nutrient requirements are within manageable limits. Fertilize the flower in the bed with compost, guano or nettle manure in March and April. In the planter, apply a liquid fertilizer every 14 days during the flowering period.

Diseases That Affect daffodils

While commercial growers have to deal with a number of viral diseases in daffodils, the danger for the flower in the hobby garden is limited to bulb basal rot. However, this fungal infection means the end because the subterranean outlasting organ rots irretrievably. Watch out for yellowing mid-season daffodil leaves as a surefire symptom. Discard the infected flower promptly to prevent spread.

Daffodil & pests

The most important pests for the flower are the small and large daffodil flies. The females lay their eggs in close proximity to the bulb in June. During the summer, the larvae burrow into the bulbs and eat them from the inside. Since an infestation can hardly be diagnosed in time, you only notice the disaster in the following spring. The leaves sprout stunted and the flower remains puny. To keep the little bidders from breeding again, discard the bulb and mix the soil with quicklime.

hibernating daffodils

Freshly planted daffodil bulbs should be protected with leaves, straw, and brushwood during the first winter. Once the flower has established itself in the bed, no special precautions are required for hibernation.

On the contrary, the wintry cold stimulus is indispensable for flower induction. Cultivate the flower in a pot, before the first frost, wrap the pot with bubble wrap and cover the substrate with leaves, straw, or sawdust.

Multiply daffodils

Numerous types of daffodil, such as the poet’s daffodil, the trumpet daffodil, or the cyclamen-flowered daffodil tend to go wild so that they reproduce quickly on their own. To speed up this process, do the following:

  • In September/October, lift a well-established daffodil bulb from the soil
  • Cut off one or more daughter onions with a sharp knife
  • Place in the soil in a sunny to a semi-shady position at the new location and water well
  • Before you plant the mother plant again, enrich the soil with compost and horn meal

Sowing seeds, on the other hand, proves to be much more complex. Since these are cold germs, stratification is required. In addition, it can take up to 4 years for the first flower to appear.

How do I plant daffodils correctly?

Transplanting daffodils is easy to implement and quite desirable. By the fifth year at the latest, this measure makes a valuable contribution to maintaining the vitality and willingness to bloom this flower. This is how the plan works:

  • After flowering or in September/October, dig up the bulb with a fork or your hands
  • Cut off the daffodil’s onions with a sharp, sanitized knife
  • Enrich the soil with compost at both the previous and the new location

Plant the flower at a depth two to three times the diameter of the bulb and water.

Daffodils in the pot

Potted daffodils exude their charm in sunny locations from February if you plant the bulbs in September of the previous year. Use compost-based potting soil as a substrate and add a handful of sand or perlite.

The planting depth is at least twice the diameter of the bulb. Drainage above the water outlet is essential. Keep the pot in a cool, frost-free cellar until the end of December/beginning of January, and do not let the substrate dry out. From January care for the flower as follows:

  • Place on the sunny to partially shaded window sill at temperatures around 15 degrees
  • Gradually increase the amount of water as soon as sprouting begins
  • Fertilize liquid every 14 days from the beginning of the flowering period

At the end of the flowering period, cut off the stems and leaves when they are completely withered. Oversummer the bulbs dry in a cool, dark basement or plant them in the garden soil.

Are daffodils poisonous?

As part of the amaryllis family, narcissus contains alkaloids and other toxins that are of grave concern to humans and animals. Unfortunately, the flower bulb resembles a kitchen onion, so unintentional consumption resulted in life-threatening poisoning.

Increased attention is paid to the reach of children and pets, or they refrain from cultivating this flower altogether. Wearing gloves for any contact is a gardener’s top priority.

Daffodil is not blooming

If the flower misses its splendor, it shows its displeasure in this way. It is important to discover and eliminate the responsible bottleneck within the cultivation. The following causes cause a failure of the flower:

  • Nutrient deficiency: apply an immediate-acting liquid fertilizer
  • Over-fertilization: stop giving fertilizer for this year
  • Obsolescence: dig up, divide and plant in fresh soil
  • Too little light: move to a sunny location

Daffodil brown leaves

If the leaves of a daffodil turn brown immediately after sprouting or during the flowering period, the following reasons are behind it:

  • Frostbite due to severe ground frost: protect with garden fleece
  • Drought: water more often
  • Waterlogging: plant on a small mound in a damp location
  • Vole feeding: Put onions in the vole basket

Daffodil Yellow leaves

If the magnificent foliage of a daffodil turns yellow in the middle of the flowering period, this damage indicates bulb basal rot. This fungal infection causes rot within the perennial organ, disrupting the supply to the above-ground parts of the plant.

The leaves turn yellow and the entire flower dies. Dispose of the infected daffodil in the household waste immediately to prevent spread.

The most beautiful varieties

  • Acropolis: bright white double flowers with an orange heart and a dreamy scent
  • Arctic Gold: yellow-gold trumpet daffodil, the incarnation of an Easter bell with an extra-long flowering period from March to May
  • Cherry Spot: the popular daffodil with white petals and an orange-red crown
  • February Gold: the earliest flower among the daffodils, which develops its golden yellow flowers from February
  • Manly: its soft yellow coloring belies its robust constitution
  • Rip van Winkel: with a delicate stature of 15 cmv(5 inches), the double flower enchants in beds and tubs from April to May
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