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by bpw245 on September 22, 2006 10:11 AM
I have a large very old bed of daffodils that need dividing badly. AND... the bed is covered with wire(Bermuda)grass. Is is possible to use a week killer on the bed that would not harm the dormant bulbs? and what sort of fertilizer should I use after getting the grass out of the way and dividing and re-planting??? this is the dreaded job of all times....years of putting it off....
bpw245

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bpw24599
by CajunMama on September 23, 2006 06:58 AM
bpw,

Just a guess on getting rid of the grass:
Roundup is absorbed through the green part of the plant...so if you have no green showing from the daffodils, I'd say spray Roundup on the grass, it will die off, then come through and remove the dead grass, then you can get to your bulbs a little easier.

This website explains a little more about how Roundup works, just remember that it's absorbed through the green of the plant, so be careful if green from the bulbs is showing, and it won't affect the soil at all. Roundup

Good luck!

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CajunMama
"Sing praises to the Lord..." Psalm 9:11
by tkhooper on September 23, 2006 08:32 PM
I would be so afraid to do that. But what I have found to be very true is that if I get out there right after a rain and don't mind getting "soggy bottom" the weeds and grass come up much easier. I have a clay embankment and burmuda grass so I feel your pain.

I have had good luck adding bone meal to the planting holes of bulbs. Then I just add mulch over the bed after the planting is done and as it decomposes it feeds the bulbs what they seem to want. At least they are having twins pretty regularly so I think they are happy.

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by TomR on September 24, 2006 02:15 AM
I'd just did the whole bed up where the bulbs are.
Roundup MIGHT work o.k. but if you really like the bulbs don't risk it!

Tom

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My memory's not as sharp as it used to be. Also, my memory's not as sharp as it used to be.
by Jiffymouse on September 24, 2006 10:50 AM
i agree with tom. i'd just did the whole thing up.
by PartyGirl on September 25, 2006 12:20 PM
If it's not too late to answer this -- what makes you think that your bulbs are dormant? Sept 22 - I will bet they are rooted. Daffodils usually get dug 6 weeks after they bloom. That should make it around Father's Day in your area, 3rd week in June, give or take a week or two.

IMHO you missed your window, but if you really, really want to get the bulbs up and out, and if they really are as overgrown as you say, I want to tell you what to expect and how you can be prepared. The bulbs will probably be what we call "apartmentized"...they have grown & multiplied as wide as they can go in your soil and will have started up, like a 5 or 6 story apartment building. You will have your original bulbs with bulbs on top of those, and bulbs on top of those....all the way to the top of the soil.

So whatcha gonna do with all those bulbs?

If you can answer that question, and can get them dug and replanted in a single day, then you can probably move them even though they started rooting. BUT be aware there will be hundreds of bulbs and some will be small. If the bed really is overgrown, they bulbs will be narrow & tear-shaped and extremely hard to get apart since they grow together like a jigsaw puzzle.

If they didn't bloom last year, or bloom was poor, they won't all of a sudden bloom next year because they haven't had enough time.

If you truly are looking for advice, I would throw some 6-24-24 or 5-20-20 on top of the soil now, again in Feb, and again in April -- a heavy dose. (It's sometimes called onion fertilizer.) THEN 6 weeks after bloom in 2007, dig them up and find homes for them. You'll have 3 or 4 months to get it done before they have to be put to bed for the winter.

PG

P.S. You can use Round Up successfully on daffodils from late July-Dec with no harm. Current thought is to add some nitrogen to the Round up to stimulate growth, especially this time of year if the grasses are going dormant. This won't be an issue for a Vah-ginian for another couple weeks, I wouldn't think.

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PG
by tkhooper on September 25, 2006 04:30 PM
I dug my daffodils up two weeks ago and they didn't have any roots. And the bulblets were to the side not on top. I too live in virginia.

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by PartyGirl on September 26, 2006 02:08 PM
Yes, the difference between the early part of the September, and the later part of the month. Ernesto dumped all that water which triggered root development.

The offsets to the side mean they hadn't been down a long, long time. In other words, yours wasn't a "large very old bed that needed to be divided very badly". Yours was more of a normal "harvest".

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PG

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