Now is the time to plant your flowering bulbs for Spring.
Proper preparation of your soil will help get them well-rooted and ready for that colorful blush in the springtime.
- Dig your soil deeply with a spade or fork, and incorporate lots of good organic compost. Include bone meal and crabshell meal for calcium and slow release nitrogen and trace elements.
- Test your ph and adjust to be in the 6.5 +/- range
- Add kelp meal or humus and a good dose of Gypsum.
Once this is all incorporated, use your garden trowl or bulb planter, and try to get those bulbs down deep, so six inches or more soil covers them.
Fall planted bulbs should go in deep for frost protection, and because they will have no problem working their way up to the surface after wintering over.
Cover your bed with a generous dose of compost or mulch to act as a blanket and prevent winter kill while slowly adding more nutrients and organic matter to your soil.
Do not use any chemical fertilizers at this time of year, they really are not suited to bulb production anyway.
If you have had problems with voles or moles, soak your bulbs in a solution of castor oil repellent, available at most garden centers under "mole repellent", and water more of it into the soil after planting.
Do this again in the spring.
It's so distasteful that most critters will go elsewhere for better tasting food.
After cleaning up the rest of your garden this fall, do the same ph testing, adjust using calcinated lime, and add organic amendments so they have time to start breaking down in the soil.
Be sure to remove all traces of this year's vegetation to avoid carrying diseases over to next year, and remember to note where you planted various crops so you can rotate their location next year. This is one of the most important factors in disease management.
If you can, put a cover crop down on areas that will be tilled in the spring.
This will fix nutrients and make them available to your plants next year.
Keep on growing.