How to Plant Crocus Bulbs


Crocuses may look delicate as they poke above mounds of snow--but they are deceiving. These plants bloom long before other flowers emerge in the spring. An afternoon of planting crocus in the fall will be rewarded in the spring with a bright splash of color.

Things You'll Need

  • Crocus bulbs Compost Garden tools Bulb fertilizer
  • Purchase crocus corms, the bulb-like stem, in early fall. Look for firm, round corms free from disease. The most common colors are yellow and purple, but there are many shades to choose from. Don't purchase left-over bulbs in discount bins--these have been atored under fluorescent lighting and inadequate air circulation.

  • Select a location that will receive at least six hours of direct sunlight. Plant near foundations or under trees where the sun beats down in early spring. A southern exposure at the entrance to your home is an ideal location. Crocuses planted on eastern or northern sides of your home will bloom later with limited production.

  • Prepare a bed for crocus in late fall before the ground has frozen. Dig a hole at least 6 to 7 inches deep and thoroughly loosen the soil. Add generous amounts of compost and mix it in well with the existing soil. Place the crocus corm into the soil at a depth of 5 inches, settling the bulb firmly in the soil. Space bulbs 2 to 3 inches apart and cover with soil. Sprinkle bulb fertilizer over the top and mix it into the top 2 to 3 inches of soil. Water thoroughly.

Tips & Warnings

  • Avoid areas where the soil will remain soggy in the late fall or early spring. Plant crocus where you will have a good view from a window. Plant in groups of three or five for a more natural appearance.

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  • Photo Credit Phaedra Wilkinson/
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