How to Move Daffodil Bulbs


Daffodil bulbs generally divide every two years, and the bulbs can clump and suffer for lack of available soil nutrition and water after five. Clumped bulbs will also refuse to bloom. Simply dig up the bulbs, divide them and move some to a different location while leaving the others in the ground to perpetuate the original daffodil garden. Some gardeners believe in storing newly separated bulbs in a cool dark place until the next season while others are staunch advocates of leaving the bulbs in the ground. Daffodils are extremely hardy plants, live for many years and are one of the first flowers to bloom, signaling spring.

Step 1

Dig the bulbs about eight weeks after the daffodil has bloomed, when the foliage has completely yellowed and the bulb is no longer drawing nourishment from the soil. Dig before the foliage disappears so you can find the bulbs.

Step 2

Use a spading fork to dig a circle at least 3 inches away from the bulb and 8 inches deep. Lift up the clump of ground carefully to avoid damaging the bulb.

Step 3

Shake off the dirt, wash and separate the individual bulbs by untwining them from the mother bulb. Inspect the bulbs and discard cut, small, bruised or blemished ones.

Step 4

Fertilize the soil with 6-24-24 fertilizer by working 3 pounds into each 100 square feet of soil.

Step 5

Replant the bulbs before the middle of October and immediately after digging them up. Plant the bulbs so the base is 6 inches below the topsoil and they are 6 inches apart in soft, well-draining soil that has had compost, rotted manure or peat worked into it.

Step 6

Place daffodils in a location that receives six to eight hours of sunlight daily until late spring. They can then do quite well when trees leaf out and shade the plants.

Step 7

Mulch the garden with approximately 1 inch of pine needles, wood chips or other organic material.

Step 8

Water the bulbs well after planting and during the fall, either by rainfall or applying it yourself.

Tips and Warnings

  • To avoid root rot, plant large, healthy bulbs that are firm, unblemished and are not cut.

Things You'll Need

  • Spading fork
  • Fertilizer
  • Mulch


  • University of Missouri Extension: Spring Flowering Bulbs: Daffodils
  • Northern California Daffodil Society
Keywords: move daffodil bulbs, planting daffodil bulbs, digging daffodil bulbs

About this Author

Freelance writing since 2009, Tom Ross has 30 years of corporate management and hands-on experience in the supermarket industry. Ross was featured on the cover of "Instore Buyer" magazine and his articles have appeared on eHow.