Watering your bulbs

Just like grocery-store onions, bulbs rot with too much moisture. And yet, they need water to generate roots and get growing. But don't fret — there's no mystery or careful balancing act. Just grow bulbs in well-drained soil; they can use the water they need, and any excess moisture should drain away.

Fall-planted, spring-flowering bulbs have it easy if you live where fall rains water them in and spring rains wake them up. (Of course, in an uncharacteristic dry spell, you can provide supplemental water.) Summer- and fall-bloomers appreciate water most when they're beginning to emerge and again when they open their flower buds. Water at these times only if the soil is dry.

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