James Akers, England


January 23, 2008

Categories: Bulb Information, Growing Daffodils, Hybridizing, Planting, Seedling, Seeds, Soil

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The facility to adjust the depth to an optimum one exists in most bulbs, including daffodils.
If you think about it, it is absolutely essential because the seeds fall upon the surface of the soil where they germinate and then need to get underground.
I have always been fascinated with the shapes of seedling daffodils in their second and subsequent years after germinating, as you can see that the shape is determined by the depth at which you plant them. Too shallow and you get a very elongated bulb to replant the next year.
In the case of the tulip which I grow thousands of, the mechanism is very different. If you plant too shallow then the bulb will produce a “dropper” with a tiny bulb where you planted the original bulb, and a hollow skin going down to a new, much larger, bulb at the correct depth.
James Akers

4 responses to “Observed”

  1. Chriss Rainey says:

    What does this say about our practice of trapping the bulbs in berry baskets and wedging them in the ground where WE want them to be? They can’t get any deeper even if they wanted to.
    On another subject, I purchased paperwhite bulbs and started them growing around Dec. 1. They sprouted and look happy enough. I see lots of helathy looking roots in the bottom of the glass container, but they are still only about 6 ” tall and don’t seem to be in any hurry to produce bloom. What can I do to make them get on with blooming?
    Chriss Rainey Virginia

  2. Kathy Welsh says:

    Do you have them inside and in the sun?  Mine have never taken more than 3 weeks to bloom.  The pattern you discribe sounds like a different variety.  Where did you buy them?

    Start the year off right. Easy ways to stay in shape in the new year.

  3. Vijay Chandhok says:

    I grow Paper White “Chinese Sacred Lily ” for its sweet  fragrance, couple of stems in the house is almost over powering. It is a type of Narcissus which grows in gardens in Srinagar Kashmir where iit is called Nargis (it is called the same in Iran and areas in between) the fragrance is very similar to this paper white. The two pictures look different as one of them is taken with a flash. They are growing now in my green house at about 50 to 60 F


  4. Chriss Rainey says:

    I have them in a very well lit room and they get a lot of morning sunshine. 
    I purchased them at Merrifield Garden Center on the day we went there with WDS to help people select bulbs.