The best way to store a flower bulb for the winter is to leave it in its natural environment in the soil, but flower bulbs cannot survive outdoors if the weather is too cold. It doesn't mean your flower bulbs can't be saved in cold climates. Carefully digging up and storing your bulbs indoors each winter will ensure that they can be replanted the next season. While different kinds of bulbs have particular storing needs, there is a set of general rules.
- Skill level:
- Moderately Easy
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Things you need
- Sharp trowel
- Paper bag
- Peat moss
- Pruning shears (optional)
Watch carefully for the first frost of the season. Just after the first frost hits, locate each bulb that you'd like to store for the winter.
Loosen the soil around each bulb with the pointed end of a sharp trowel, taking care not to damage any little offshoots.
Push the pointed end of the trowel all the way down into the soil directly next to the base of each bulb. Push sideways on the trowel handle to gently pry each bulb up and out of the ground.
Lay the bulbs out on newspaper in a bright airy room. Make sure they aren't overlapping, and leave them until they're dry.
Cut off any old stems at the base with sharp pruning shears. This step is optional, but can prevent any unnecessary rotting during the storage period.
Fill a paper bag with dry peat moss, and bury your bulbs inside individually. It's better if the bulbs are not touching.
Store the bag in a cool, dry area, like a basement that doesn't receive extra moisture. It's good if the room is dark, but not absolutely necessary. Make sure the temperature of the room does not regularly exceed 12.8 degrees Celsius. Leave them until next planting season.
Tips and warnings
- Any moisture during storage can rot some kinds of bulbs
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