Dividing and Transplanting Daffodils

Nothing says spring has arrived quite like daffodils. Even under the cover of a late snow, these cheery yellow blooms promise warm days, green gardens and blue skies.

One great thing about daffodils is that the bulbs will multiply so a single bulb will eventually turn into a big clump. Every five to 10 years the bulbs can get overcrowded, resulting in fewer and smaller blooms. The solution is to divide and transplant.

First, make sure that the daffodils are dormant before you move them. Wait until the foliage turns yellow. Dig the bulbs up and gently pull apart to separate them. Dig a hole that is three times as deep as the bulb is wide, add some compost and drop in the bulb with the foliage end pointing up. Back fill the hole with soil, water well and you’re done.

One last tip: make sure their new home has full to partial sun and very well-drained soil. Daffodils don’t like dense shade or wet feet.

Good to Know: Caring for Daffodils After Blooming

Daffodils are one of the most reliable spring bulbs. They’ll come back year after year with minimal care.

  • You can remove the flowers after they fade, but leave the foliage intact for at least eight weeks or until it turns yellow. It’s the leaves that produce energy for next year’s bloom.
  • In fall drench the soil where daffodils are planted with a liquid fertilizer. This is when root growth is most active. Follow the application recommendation on the fertilizer package.