Year-Round Bulbs – Planning A Bulb Garden For All Seasons

Bulbs on Soil Ready to Plant.
all season bulbs
(Image credit: Lena_Zajchikova)

All season bulb gardens are a great way to add easy color to beds. Plant the bulbs at the right time and in the right ratios and you can have flowers blooming spring, summer, fall, and even winter if you live in a mild climate. You just need to know which bulbs to choose to keep the color coming.

Bulb Gardening Year-Round

To plant a year-round bulb garden, do a little research to find out which bulbs flower in which season. You’ll also need to consider your growing zone. Where a bulb is not hardy in winter, you’ll need to dig it out at the end of fall and overwinter indoors for the next year.

For instance, dinner plate dahlias, with their stunning and large blooms, flower in late summer and fall. They are only hardy, however, through zone 8. In colder zones, you can still grow these beauties but be aware of the extra work required to dig them up each year.

With research in hand, plan your beds so that the bulbs are spaced for continuous color. In other words, don’t put all the spring bulbs together and all the summer bulbs together on the other end of the bed. Mix them together for ongoing color.

Spring-Blooming Bulbs

For year-round bulbs, start planning for the spring. This means planting spring-blooming bulbs in the fall. Spring bulbs are the typical flowers most people think of when talking about bulbs:

Summer Bulbs

Well planned all-season bulb gardens continue into summer. Plant these in the spring. Those not hardy in your zone will need to be dug up before winter.

Fall-Flowering Bulbs

Plant these fall bulbs around midsummer, a little sooner or later depending on the local climate:

In warmer climates, try growing bulbs even in winter. Narcissus, which many people force indoors, will bloom outside in winter in zones 8 through 10. Also try snowdrops and winter aconite.

Mary Ellen Ellis

Mary Ellen Ellis has been gardening for over 20 years. With degrees in Chemistry and Biology, Mary Ellen's specialties are flowers, native plants, and herbs.