Monty Don shares ‘important’ tip to remember when planting bulbs

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On the latest episode of Gardeners’ World, Monty Don shared how to harvest aubergines, take pelargonium cuttings and plant spring-flowering bulbs. The lead Gardeners’ World host shared insight into how well parts of Longmeadow had coped during the dry, hot summer.

He also shared which jobs gardeners can be doing now as the seasons begin to change.

One task many gardeners will be doing now is planting bulbs ready for spring.

Monty, 67, said he would “normally” be planting bulbs like daffodils into the grass and growing bulbs in long grass for spring, however, he said the ground is still too hard despite the rain.

He said: “There is no way I could get a bulb into the ground. The ground is still like iron.”

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Instead, he shared how to plant different daffodil bulbs into pots.

He continued: “Now is a really good time to plant bulbs in pots. So what I’ve got here are three different daffodils that I particularly like and I’ve grown for a long time and I highly recommend.”

Monty planned to plant three different types of daffodil. The first to flower is Tete-a-Tete, which starts flowering in February and is about eight to nine inches tall. The plant produces a beautiful simple yellow flower.

Then he planned to plant his Arctic bells. This has got rounded almost bowl-like flower and is much paler, and that will flower March.

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He also planned to plant Pipit, which is another “favourite” of his. Pipit doesn’t lower until April.

Monty continued: “All of them can be planted now at the same time. So we put a crock [a piece of terracotta pot] in and then half fill the pot with compost and I’m going plant the Arctic bells first.

“I always do it the same way which is to put a ring around the outside of the pot.

“And when you’re growing in a container you can afford to put them really quite close together.

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“Of course, as always, pointy side up and then another inner circle and one in the middle.”

Monty said when planting daffodil bulbs, they should not be planted too high up but should be placed around “halfway down the pot”. He also said it’s “important to keep them covered”.

Once planted, cover them over with another layer of compost and finally, cover them with a layer of grit.

The grit makes the pot look more attractive and it is more practical because when it rains or you water them, the compost often splashes up and specs of dirt end up on the plant. Using the grit means this doesn’t happen.

Don’t forget to label the pots so you’re aware of which varieties are in the pots.

Gardeners won’t see any signs of life until the new year or even February.

Monty said gardeners should not allow the pots to dry out completely.

He said: “I water these maybe once a month, but don’t let them get too wet.

“And they can be stored in the dark quite happily until the new year and then bring them out so they get some light.”

Gardeners’ World is available to stream on BBC iPlayer.

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