How to Plant in Memory of Bulbs


Planting bulbs in memory of someone who has passed away, is a wonderful way to preserve their memory and honor their life. Not only are they beautiful, flowers that return each spring symbolize rebirth after a season of seeming death. Others simply view it as enduring love. Whatever the reason, planting bulbs in memory of someone begins with choosing the proper location and providing the proper conditions needed for growth.

Step 1

Select a location that provides the lighting the specific flower needs. Most spring-blooming bulbs require a sunny location that receives 6 to 8 hours of direct sunlight. Summer-blooming flowers, like lilies, thrive in the sun but will tolerate partial shade.

Step 2

Till the soil to a depth of 8 to 12 inches and add 2-3 inches of compost or well-rotted manure. Work it into the existing soil.

Step 3

Plant spring-blooming bulbs like crocus, daffodil and tulips in the fall before the ground has frozen. Plant summer-blooming bulbs in the spring after the danger of frost has passed.

Step 4

Place bulbs to the recommended depth (see Resources). As a rule, plant bulbs to a depth of three times the height of the bulb. Plant with the pointed or rounded end upward and the flat end down. You may see tiny hair roots around the bottom of the bulb.

Step 5

Cover with soil and firm down with your hands to remove air pockets and settle the bulbs. Water thoroughly to the depth of the bulbs.

Step 6

Add bulb food to the surface of the soil and mix into the top inch or two. It will dissolve with rain and snow providing nutrients to the bulbs.

Things You'll Need

  • Bulbs
  • Garden tools
  • Compost/well-rotted manure
  • Bulb food


  • University of Illinois Extension
  • University of Vermont Extension
  • Purdue Extension

Who Can Help

  • Bulb Depth Guide
Keywords: plant bulbs, spring blooming, summer blooming

About this Author

Nannette Richford is an avid gardener, teacher and nature enthusiast with more than four years' experience in online writing. Richford holds a Bachelor of Science in secondary education from the University of Maine Orono and certifications in teaching 7-12 English, K-8 General Elementary and Birth to age 5.