Close-up of daffodil bulbs
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Plant Bulbs in November

As wet November leaves twirl in the wind and tumble to the ground, temperatures drop and the days grow quite short. There is still time however, to bundle up and make one last venture into the garden to plant garlic and spring blooming flower bulbs. It’s a fun and hopeful way to prepare for the beginning of next year’s growing season.

Plant Garlic

Planted garlic cloves often do not begin sprouting until January or February, but the roots are actively growing below the surface of the soil. Good garlic production relies on a well-established root structure to support healthy leaf growth in the spring.

Plant individual cloves one to two inches beneath the soil surface with the root side down, placing them four to six inches apart. Do not fertilize until the garlic begins active growth in early spring, feeding them with a liquid fertilizer such as worm tea or fish emulsion every couple of weeks until June.

Plant Spring Flowering Bulbs

Spring flowering bulbs herald the spring with color and can provide pollinators with a welcome source of nectar. Bulbs are typically planted 2 to 3 times deeper than the height of the bulb—check the package for specific information.

Daffodils, crocus, grape hyacinths, and tulips are popular choices for vibrant color. For something new to enjoy, consider planting less-common bulbs such as Windflower (Anemone), Dog-Tooth Violet (Erythronium), Wake Robin (Trillium) and Checkered Lily or Crown Imperial (Fritallaria). Many of these flowers are delicate woodland plants that pair nicely with deciduous trees. Plant in groups of 5 to 10 bulbs for a more naturalistic planting pattern.