Aftercare Instructions

• After flowering the bulb is almost ‘empty’. So to encourage flowering next year it is very important that the bulb builds up new reserves. This rest period allows new flowers to be developed in the bulb. Optimum rest would include (very) good light conditions and preferably a warm climate of 70F to 80F.

• So what to do?

• After flowering remove the dead flower stems, don’t remove the foliage.

• If the plant is in a small pot, replant the bulb in a large pot, at least twice the diameter of the bulb. Use a good quality well drained planters mix or peat moss.
• If the bulb is already in a wide pot, replanting is not necessary.

• Amaryllis, specially the bulbs, prefer a warm climate of 70F to 80F and a light place

• If the outdoor temperature is within the acceptable range, it can also be grown outdoors. Typically those in the warmer, southern climates have the best luck with this method.

• Water regularly, using a basic plant feed every two month at a low rate.

• About 6 to 7 months after flowering, move the plant to a cool location of 50F to 60F for a period of 3 months (indoors or outdoors) temperature is by far the most important.
• Water very moderately to keep soil slightly moist during two months, than stop watering. The leaves may remain green, but may also gradually die; the death of the leaves is not a problem.

• After 3 months, move plant back to 70F to 80F, cut off the foliage and dry the top of the neck to prevent neck-rot.

• Do not water until new leaves and flower stems appear.

• After 8 to 10 weeks the amaryllis may flower again.

• Repeat these steps after every flower cycle.

Being in cultivation since 1576 in England, Muscari is a plant that has stood the test of time! There are over forty species of plants in the genus Muscari which all produce spikes of blue flowers which resemble bunches of grapes. The two most common species in cultivation are the Muscari armeniacum(typically blue in color) and Muscari botryoides var. alba (typically white in color). Muscari are very easy to grow and bloom in early to late spring depending on the species. Their lovely blooms range in color from blue, purple, to white and grow well in rock gardens, borders, and as under-plantings for tulips, daffodils, and other taller spring blooming bulb plants. Rodents and deer tend to shun this plant which makes them great for naturalizing along the edges of wooded areas!

Planting Muscari in Outdoor Areas

1. Muscari are planted in fall. They will form roots in fall and will bloom in early to mid-spring.
2. Muscari is a durable plant and will grow in most locations but prefers cool moist soil. However like many other bulbs it prefers well drained soil and does not like having wet feet.
3. Muscari grow best when planted in partial sun, however are tolerant of full sun.
4. Muscari are best when used for naturalizing an area, to attain this look you can simply map out an area you would like them to grow and dig that whole area about 2-3” deep and then scatter the bulbs about for a natural look. If you desire to evenly space them at time of planting, 2-3” is sufficient however not necessary.
5. It can be somewhat difficult to determine which end of a Muscari bulb is “up”. If you are unsure of which side is up, plant with the flattest side down, the bulb will be smart enough to turn towards the sun, but may just take a few extra days to reach the surface.
6. Thoroughly soak the area with water once all the bulbs have been planted.Water as needed while the plant is growing and blooming.
7. After the flowers have died, allow the foliage to yellow and die back. The leaves will continue to gather sunlight and make food for next year’s blooms.
8. Once the foliage has yellowed and dried, the foliage may be removed by gently pulling it out of the soil. If the leaves do not easily pull away from the bulb, they are not ready to be removed. Your bulbs are now dormant and ready to “rest” until next year!

Planting Grape Hyacinths in Containers

1. Choose containers that have good drainage holes, easy to move around and will not be sensitive to freezing temperatures.
2. Fill containers with good quality, well-drained soil. Just as when planted in the ground make sure the bulbs do not sit wet. Adequate drainage holes are a must!
3. Place containers in a location where they will receive partial to full sun.
4. Space the Muscari bulbs close together, just as long as they are not touching each other or the sides of the container.
5. Plant the bulbs approximately 2-3” deep. With the flattest side down. If you cannot determine which side is the flattest, the bulb will naturally turn itself around towards the light.
6. Thoroughly soak the container with water once all the bulbs have been planted. Water as needed while the plant is growing and blooming.
7. Muscari need a “cool period”…they will not survive if frozen. Therefore, if you live in an area where winters are severe and the ground freezes, the container needs to be moved into a cool place that does not receive frost, such as a garage or cool basement. If the container is too large or heavy to move inside, bubble wrap or burlap can be used to protect the pot from freezing.
8. As the weather begins to warm up, monitor the pot for signs of Muscari sprouts. Once the sprouts are seen, gradually expose the pot to a sunny patio or lawn area. If you left the container outdoors and wrapped it for protection, remove this protection at this time.
9. Enjoy these lovely flowers in your pot or plant them in the yard at this time.
10. After the flowers have died, allow the foliage to yellow and die back. The leaves will continue to gather sunlight and make food for next year’s blooms.
11. Once the foliage has yellowed and dried, the foliage may be removed by gently pulling it out of the soil. If the leaves do not easily pull away from the bulb, they are not ready to be removed. Your Muscari are now dormant and ready to “rest” until next year!

Forcing Muscari for Indoor blooms or Growing in Warm Weather Areas

If you are located in an area which does not get cool enough winters (Zones 8b and further south) or would like Muscari blooming indoors late winter follow these instructions. The bulbs will need to be in this environment for 10-16 weeks

1. You will need an artificially cool environment such as a refrigerator or chilled cellar. Take care not to place the bulbs near apples or other fruits that produce ethylene gases as this will cause the bulbs to rot.
2. Choose pots that store easily and are easy to move. 6-8” plastic bulb pans work the best.
3. Fill the containers with a good quality well-draining soil. Make sure the containers have adequate drain holes this is a MUST!
4. Space the Muscari bulbs close together, just as long as they are not touching each other or the sides of the container.
5. The plants should be planted just deep enough that the tips of them are showing through the soil.
6. Water the container well after planting. Keep the soil slightly moist during the cool period, but not wet as this could encourage the bulbs to rot. After you have watered the container you may move it to the refrigerator or chill cellar.
7. Once 10-16 weeks has passed and you start to see tender shoots forming, you can gradually expose the bulbs to sunlight and warmer temperatures. Keeping the bulbs in a cool 68 degree room in your home is ideal while they are blooming.
8. Enjoy your lovely Muscari blooms
9. After flowering allow the foliage to yellow and dry. Once the foliage has yellowed and dried you may remove it.

After flowering, clip the dead flower off the stem, and let the foliage die off while maintaining water level. When the foliage has completed drying out, you may see new little bulbs beginning to form, leave these. Cut the foliage, and store the bulbs dry and as cool as possible until early November. Then plant them in your garden, using a good mix of soil and compost. Thoroughly water them at planting.

When and where to plant (in my zone) after flowering?

Zones 4 & 5 – September or early October
Zones 6 & 7 – October to early November
Zones 8 & 9 – November to early December
Zone 10 – Late December to early January

Refrigerate tulips bulbs for six to eight weeks before planting in zones 8 through 10, Place them in a paper bag away from ripening fruits (the fruits produce ethylene gas, which destroys the flower bud within the bulb).

Tulips grow best in full sun in well-prepared soil with fast drainage. Avoid planting where water collects, or in locations that are prone to late frosts.

Planting zone: Source