It's Easy To Plant Bulbs In Oregon

Oct 3, 2016

When you plant a dozen tulip bulbs in Wisconsin, you get 12 blooms the first spring, 8 the next, and one or two by the third year. The cold climate is tough on the showiest flowers of spring.

Credit John Fischer

But in Oregon the 12 bulbs I planted 20 years ago now produce a hundred flowers in my yard, and who knows how many in the yards of friends I've passed the extras on to.
Planting bulbs is simple. Loosen the soil down about 12 inches. That will be easier after a rain. Plant bulbs 2 to 3 times as deep as the size of the bulb with the pointy side down. For tulips 4 to 6 inches, a little deeper for daffodils, shallower for crocuses.

Credit John Fischer

You might work a little bone meal into the soil, or add some lime if you haven't for a few years. But even if you just dig a trench, throw the bulbs in, and cover them with soil, you will have success in Oregon.
I leave my bulbs in the ground all year- ideally in a place they get minimal summer water. Cut off the seed heads after the bloom has dropped, but leave the foliage . It's producing food for next springs tulips- and a bonus- more bulbs
When you dig around your spent tulips to plant summer flowers next spring, you will find twice as many bulbs as you started with The bulb-lets or offsets can be separated from the main bulb, and planted somewhere else. They may not bloom the first year, but given time, your first planting of bulbs can populate a whole flower bed.
The new bulbs will be clones of the originals, so start with a variety of colors. Plant your bulbs before thanksgiving, and you'll have a feast for your eyes next spring.