A Guide to Cutting Back Your Spring Bulb Flowers

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Do you know when the best time is to cut back your spring bulb flowers and foliage and why timing is so important for next year’s blooms?

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There are Benefits to the Right Timing

If you want next year’s flowers to continue to be healthy and bloom beautifully, you need to resist the strong urge to cut back the spent spring bulb’s foliage.

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When is It Safe to Cut Back Spent Spring Bulb Flowers?

Cut back to the ground as soon as they have finished blooming. This allows the bulbs to focus their energy on new growth.


The general rule of thumb for cutting back spent spring bulb leaves is about eight weeks.

When Should You Cut Back Your Spent Spring Bulb Foliage?

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Why Wait to Cut Back Spring Bulb Foliage?

Bulbs need to keep their foliage to photosynthesize so the flower bulbs store the food supply to set new buds.

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Don’t Tie the Foliage Into Bundles

The leaves of the spring bulbs need to be exposed to sunlight during the process of photosynthesis so don’t tie them up.

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Cutting back the bulb’s leaves at the right time can help promote regrowth, improve the health of the plant, and encourage healthy flowers the following spring.

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Is the Spring Bulb Foliage Ready to Cut Back?

Gently pull the leave. If it comes out of the ground without resistance, the bulb has all the nutrients it needs for the next season and can be cut back.

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