Have you heard of a spring bulb lasagne? It’s an easy way to create a beautiful spring bulb potted display that will reward you with flowers from late winter through the whole spring season.
The concept is simple. Planting in layers allows bulbs that flower at different times to share the same pot meaning that as one finishes blooming another is ready to take its place. It’s the ultimate space-saving gardening hack!
We have just planted two bulb lasagne pots to sit either side of our front door. Here’s what we did if you’d like to make your own.
What we used in our bulb lasagne.
We are hoping for a beautiful display in our pots so planted our bulbs much closer together than you would in the open ground. Obviously the more substantial your pot, the more bulbs you’ll be able to fit in it. Our containers have a diameter of 15 inches across their tops and are 12 inches high. They are just big enough to fit 3 layers of bulbs in, and I hope to get two years good display out of them before having to renew.
There is no doubt that the hardest part of this project is choosing the bulbs! I drove my daughter mad changing my mind in the garden centre. The trick is to choose bulbs that will give you a succession of flowers.
We went for early flowering crocus (Amazon affiliate link) and dwarf iris (Amazon affiliate link) for our top layer. These flower February into March. Our middle layer is a mix of narcissus (Amazon affiliate link) and grape hyacinth (Amazon affiliate link) which will flower March into April. And our bottom layer is made up of some beautiful late flowering tulips which will bloom in May.
We used bulb compost (Amazon affiliate link) as our planting medium – mainly because it was on offer when we bought our bulbs. Bulbs love to be in humus rich, free draining soil and can rot if they become waterlogged. Regular potting compost also works well and adding some grit (up to 20%) will help drainage and keep your bulbs extra happy.
A couple of inches of gravel in the bottom of your pot will also improve drainage.
How to plant a bulb lasagne.
I highly recommend measuring the layers of your bulb lasagne on the inside of your pot before you start. Once you start adding compost, it can be challenging to judge how much you have added. It’s also a great way to check how many layers your pot can hold.
Each layer needs to contain 2 inches of compost and having extra underneath the bottom layer will only benefit your spring bulbs. It is also a good idea to wear gloves when handling flowering bulbs as some may cause skin irritation.
As mentioned above, we planted our bulbs closer to each other than commonly recommended. It is still important however to ensure your bulbs don’t touch each other or the side of the pot. Otherwise there is a risk of fungus developing. Bulbs have a top and a bottom and should be planted with the point facing up and the base facing down.
The photo below shows our beautiful tulip bulbs. A mix of a double-flowered variety called Sunlover (Amazon affiliate link) which has gorgeous orange/red/yellow hues and some Black Parrot tulips (Amazon affiliate link) with their gorgeous feathered purple petals.
The middle layer of my bulb lasagne contains a delightful ready made mix of spring bulbs (Amazon affiliate link) called woodland walk. It combines pretty yellow Tete a Tete narcissus with gorgeous blue grape hyacinth (Muscari armeniacum) which will look delightful together.
For the final layer of our bulb lasagne, we planted a mix of tiny early flowering crocus in a blend of white, yellow and purple combined with a beautiful dwarf iris blend of both purple and yellow varieties. This layer could come into flower as early as February, and I can’t wait for the day that I open my door and see their beautiful little flowers opening.
Once you have planted your bulb lasagne give it a good water. If you want to you can dress it with some grit to finish it off. You may want to tuck your pots out the way somewhere in readiness for spring. – They’re not much to look at in their bare state. We’ve already positioned our pots where they will flower as I have a plan for them while we wait for our bulbs to grow.