Asked on Feb 22, 2012

Soaking bulbs???

Fran JelleyGhi5552471Christina Dorrego


Has anyone ever soaked flower bulbs in water before planting?I read a article that said it would help with producing better flowers.It also said that soaking them in certain substances could prevent disease and deter pests.If this is true which ones should be soaked and what should they be soaked in?It seems like they would rot?
9 answers
  • 3po3
    on Feb 23, 2012

    I have never tried soaking flower bulbs, but the Georgia cooperative extension folks have a good piece on flowering bulbs for a climate very close to yours. Search soak in this document for a list of bulbs that should be soaked:

  • I grew up in upstate NY and my Mom was a master gardener....she always soaked her bulbs in water the night before thinking it gave them a boost when she planted. We had a 5-acre garden there. I'm sure some of our expert gardeners will be able to chime in!

  • Erica Glasener
    on Feb 23, 2012

    Marvin, the only bulbs I know that people sometimes soak before planting in luke warm water for just a few hours are the Grecian wind flower, Anemone blanda. But then you plant them in a site that has well drained soil. As far as keeping pests away maybe they are using a chemical but in general bulbs are dormant and don't need to be soaked prior to planting.

  • Walter Reeves
    on Feb 23, 2012

    I agree with Erica. Small, dry bulbs might benefit from soaking but most bulbs will do fine without the process.

  • Douglas Hunt
    on Feb 23, 2012

    The only bulb I've ever soaked before planting was Eranthis hyemalis, or winter aconite. They would definitely fall into the small, dry category.

  • M'sMammy
    on May 12, 2015

    I tried soaking tulip bulbs in hot sauce to deter squirrels. Came up the first year but this year they are ALL just gone! Maybe squirrels like it hot or something.

  • Christina Dorrego
    on May 31, 2015

    none of my stupid bulbs came up. Of course I got them at Walmart, and one of them simply crumbled due to rot.....maybe I will actually find quality ones this year....

    • Kathy
      on Oct 25, 2018

      I buy all my bulbs on line at Brecks. They come from Holland. They are a very good price often bogo price and they guarantee them.

  • Ghi5552471
    on May 9, 2016

    I soaked a lily overnight that I bought in a £1 store as it was very dry, To my suprise it started to show after 2 Days

  • Fran Jelley
    on Oct 16, 2016

    i always soak bulbs and particularly liliums because they are planted deep and rainfall wont reach their roots

Your comment...