is what my garden looks like after all the rain. I planted 100 daffodil
bulbs and 50 tulips in this garden and most have sprouted, as you
can see. Will they rot in these conditions?
your photo it looks like they're growing quite healthily, so as
long as the water drains away within an hour or so, the bulbs may
well survive without major damage. But if it often floods like this,
or takes days to drain, they could become diseased.
The tulips will probably
be the first to show damage symptoms as they generally prefer more
freedraining soil. Both daffodils and tulips are also likely to
suffer damage if the soil gets badly waterlogged when the bulbs
are dormant, so maybe you should consider improving the drainage
in that part of the garden.
There are some relatively
simple methods for improving drainage. For instance, you could dig
shallow channels 10cm or so wide and deep to direct water away from
your garden. And you could raise the level of your garden soil above
the surrounding area by adding coarse sand and compost or granulated
bark so the water drains away from your plants. You'd need to dig
up the plants first then replant in the raised bed, but I'm sure
they'd appreciate the move. Wait until after the bulbs have died
down before moving them.
Gardener, Issue 177, 2005, Page 30
Reproduced with permission from the former Weekend Gardener magazine. The views expressed here are not necessarily those of the RNZIH.