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I let my flowerbed go for a couple of years during my husbands illness. This year we had to turn all of the dirt and sift it to rid the bed of weeds. So, I had to pull my daffodils. They were mostly died back, so the bulbs should be viable for blooming next year. I let them sit till the leaves were brown.
My question is...now that the beds are cleaned out and fixed, when should I put the bulbs back in (zone 5)? Should I wait till fall? How long shoud they be set out for drying...just till the dirt on them dries up? I don't know what variety they are. They bloom while the snow is still on the ground. Usually mid-March.
I'm always digging them up whether accidently or on purpose. If they seem too crowded I dig them up right after they are done blooming, divide them and put them in the ground somewhere else. Leave all the green leaves on and let them die down naturally. If I dig them up accidentally I put them back in the ground right away or set them to the side and throw dirt over them until I can put them back in the ground. Don't wait until Fall. Do it as soon as possible. They seem to know if they are in the ground or not and trust me they really want to be in the ground. I started out with a bag of 100 bulbs many years ago and now I can't count that high. haha. Fall IS the normal planting time when you are starting with new bulbs from the store but since we're not those rules don't apply.
We had to have an archeological survey of a historic site here. I noticed the workers were digging up the bulbs while setting their stakes, and sticking them back in any old way. Even upside down. I think they would have done better if they were planted right side up. The ripening stage for letting the foliage die back after blooming is critical for daffodils. I wouldn't expect good results from digging them up during the ripening period. Usually weeds can be controlled, by mowing after the foliage has thoroughly ripened--but keep the mowers away as long as there is foliage on the plants.