How to plant Crocus bulbs

Crocus

Crocuses are among the first signs of spring, sometimes even popping their delicately beautiful blooms up above a carpet of snow. No matter whether you choose gold, purple, blue or white crocuses, you’re sure to be in for a treat this spring. Combine them with early tulips or daffodils for even more visual excitement. Mankind has a long relationship with these flowers.

Crocus planting basics

When you plant crocuses, there is a very good chance that you will be enjoying them for many years, so choose the perfect spot to get the most out of your bulbs. The position should be sunny, or only have light shade, and the soil should be well-drained. Compost helps to improve drainage in clay soil and helps sandy soils to retain the moisture your bulbs will need.

How to plant Crocus bulbs

— Crocuses are fully hardy and will be fine outdoors throughout winter. They should be planted between September and November for best results, but can be planted as late as December if stored correctly. They must be planted in the same year that they were supplied, while fresh – they won’t store until the following year. If you’re not ready to plant them as soon as you receive them, you can open up the packets to let air circulate the bulbs and store them in a cool, dry place until December at the latest.

— Crocus bulbs can be planted directly outside in borders or patio containers.

— If you have a heavy soil or soil with a high clay content, it is a good idea to incorporate plenty of compost and some grit or sand prior to planting to aid drainage.

— If planting in containers, we recommend using peat-free multipurpose compost.

— Choose a position in full sun or partial/dappled shade.

— Crocus bulbs should be planted 10-15cm deep with the shoots facing upwards.Towards the end of the planting season, the shoots may already have started to grow – they should be planted at the usual depth with the shoots kept intact below the surface.

— Crocus look great planted in small clusters or groups. Space the bulbs between 5-15cm apart from each other.

— Cover back over with soil/compost. If the soil is very dry, it’s a good idea to water them in after planting to settle them. They will not require any further watering through winter unless you have very mild winters and the soil becomes dry. They will only require water in spring if it is warm and the soil is dry.

— Allow the foliage to turn yellow before removing it and leave the bulbs planted in the ground throughout the year.

Plant calendar

JanFebMarAprMayJuneJulyAugSepOctNovDec
  • Planting
  • Flowering

Gracy says: Crocuses

"A carpet of spring colour consisting of delicate-seeming blooms on plants that are nevertheless as tough as nails—that's what you get when you choose crocus bulbs for your spring garden."

Planting instructions