Saving Potted Daffodils

Daffodils by Poppins Garden (on flickr)
Daffodils by Poppins' Garden (on flickr)

TheGardenLady received this question from Cecilia.

I have some daffodils in pots and the flowers have already dried out. What do I need to do  to keep them healthy for next year? Or will theybe fine without my help?

When the flowers on your daffodils dry out, cut them off. This goes for daffodils growing outdoors, too. But NEVER cut off the leaves. After flowering the leaves continue to provide nutrients to the bulb. By cutting the flowers off you prevent the daffodil from setting seed. Unless you are a professional daffodil breeder or an avid amateur, daffodil seeds are more difficult to work with so you don’t want the plant to set seed. You want all the energy and growth to go into the bulb for next year’s bloom.

Now with potted daffodils, because the plant was forced- the bulb may no longer be any good. But you can try to save it and hope it is still ok. The daffodil you bought came in a small pot with limited soil which was depleted of nutrients when it was forced and bloomed. So even though the fall is the best time to plant daffodil bulbs, TheGardenLady would immediately plant the flowerless bulbs into the ground with the leaves still on. This way the bulbs may have a chance of living by getting some nutrients from the leaves as  well as from the outdoor soil. Mark where you planted the bulbs after the leaves die, so that you know where to look next spring to see if you saved those daffodils. Remember, plants want to live so that if you give them a good chance, they might comply. But, if they die, you know you tried.

Good luck.

One Reply to “Saving Potted Daffodils”

  1. From Ohio planted Daffodils and tulips in pots outside…heard it won’t work….dug up one pot and found soft bulbs but they had green starting on top and a few roots…do they have a chance if I move them into the garage and cover them or should I just give up on them??

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