Creating a Bulb Lasagne

1. Which bulbs should you chose?

When planting a bulb lasagne, it’s important to choose bulbs with different flowering times for each layer. This will give you a long-lasting display of flowers as the layers bloom and fade. For example, your lasagne bulb pot could use Iris reticulata or crocuses for the earliest wave of flowers. The next wave could include daffodils or early-flowering tulips, followed by late-flowering bulbs such as lilies or late tulips.

1. Preparation of the Ground

Find a safe suitable spot in the garden to position your sandpit, an area with some shade would be ideal. Remove and turf and make sure that the ground is level and free of stones. If you are building the sand pit on an already prepared area, such as a patio or decked area, ensure that it will bear the weight of the sleepers, sand and playmates!

2. How to plant a bulb lasagne

Planting a bulb lasagne pot is very straightforward. Here’s how it’s done:

First, pick your pot. For two layers of bulbs, you’ll need a pot that’s at least 15cm (6in) deep and ideally a bit deeper, to give your bulbs space to grow. D&J supply oak barrels which are perfect for this.

Add some gravel at the bottom of the pot to stop the drainage holes clogging up with compost, as bulbs rot easily in cold, wet soil.

Put a 5cm (2in) layer of compost (available from D&J in either bulk bags, half bags or 25kg bags) in the pot, then place the biggest, latest-flowering bulbs (e.g. late tulips) in a layer on top of the compost. Space the bulbs about 2.5cm (1in) apart.

Cover the bulbs with a 5cm (2in) layer of compost.

Add another layer of smaller, earlier-flowering bulbs (e.g. daffodils) on top of this compost, spaced about 2.5cm (1in) apart so that the bulbs below can find their way past them.

Cover these bulbs with another layer of compost.

If you have a deep enough pot, you could put in the third layer of early flowering bulbs, such as Iris reticulata, and cover them with a final layer of compost.

If you don’t want your pots to look bare through winter, you could plant winter bedding in the top layer of compost. Violas are ideal for this, as it’s easy for the bulbs to grow through them in spring.

3. Aftercare

Water the pots after planting and in the first few weeks, while the bulbs are putting out roots.

Put pots on pot feet to improve drainage and, in cold areas, wrap the pots in fleece to protect them from frost.

Once each layer of bulbs has flowered, deadhead and cut the foliage back to stop it looking untidy.

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