How to plant Hyacinth bulbs


Hyacinths are among the most sweetly scented of the spring flowers, and they’re available in more colours than you would ever have believed! They’re easy and reliable outdoor plants and can be grown indoors in good light. As bedding plants, they make a great edging or plant for walkways and entrances as well as containers and mixed borders. Did you know that you can get yellow, red, and even near-black Hyacinths? You can also get rare varieties with double florets!

Hyacinth planting basics

The Dutch growers who got your bulb to peak flowering size have taken care to give you bulbs that are ready to produce their best flowers. All they need from you is a sunny or lightly shaded position and well-drained soil. If you have a heavy soil or soil with a higher clay content, improve it first with lots of well-rotted compost or choose a freely draining potting medium.

How to plant Hyacinth bulbs

— Hyacinths are fully hardy and prefer to be outdoors throughout winter. They should be planted between September and November for best results. If you’re not ready to plant them as soon as you receive them, you can store them in a cool, dry place which is out of reach of squirrels and mice. They may start to deteriorate from December onwards so it is best to get them planted before then - they won’t store until the following year.

— Hyacinth 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.

— The bulbs will naturally be a purplish colour. Plant the bulbs around 10-15cm deep with the pointed side facing upwards.

— Space the bulbs around 5-10cm 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.

Plant calendar

  • Planting
  • Flowering

Gracy says: Hyacinths

"Spring arrives, and the air is filled with sweet scent of flowers. Hyacinths will surely make a big contribution, and as for the sparkling blooms packed densely on each flower spike, nothing could be more distinctive."

Planting instructions