Bulb Growing Guide

Tulips, daffodils, hyacinths or freesias – whatever your bloom of choice may be, filling your piece of paradise with fragrant floral displays will bring joy on a daily basis.

As summer eases its time think about bulbs. Autumn is the best time to plant and feed spring flowering bulbs.


Like building a house a good foundation is the key to success in your garden. The better the soil, the better your bulbs will grow. If you are starting with an existing garden bed dig in organic matter like Tui Sheep Pellets and Tui Compost to your soil. Then you can add a layer of Tui Bulb Mix.

If planting in pots and containers, fill with Tui Bulb Mix.


The widest selection of bulbs will be available in store from mid-February to early April. Check individual bulb planting instructions and use the Kent & Stowe Hand Bulb Planter for easy planting.

Directions for planting in garden beds:

  • Dig a hole, approximately twice the diameter of your bulb.
  • Partly fill the hole with Tui Bulb Mix (if you haven't already added a layer)
  • Position the bulb in the centre of the hole.
  • Fill in with Tui Bulb Mix, and press soil in gently around the bulb.
  • Water your bulbs well.

Directions for planting in pots and containers:

  • Partly fill your container with Tui Bulb Mix.
  • Position the bulbs in the container.
  • Fill your container with Tui Bulb Mix up to 3cm from the top.
  • Bulbs should be planted twice as deep as the diameter of the bulb.
  • Tap the container gently on the ground to settle the mix, and press the soil in gently.
  • Water your bulbs well.


Feed your bulbs and they will reward you. Replenishing nutrients used by your bulbs ensures they will grow to their full potential. Select a fertiliser specially blended for your flowers like Tui Bulb Food which is specially blended for bulbs planted in garden beds. Feed your bulbs when planting, when stems begin to appear, when starting to flower and when dying down.

Feed bulbs planted in containers with NovaTec Premium fertiliser.

Keep the soil moist while the bulbs are growing. Well watered, well nourished bulbs will have a better chance of keeping insect pests and diseases at bay.

Tui Tips:

  • Most bulbs should be pre-chilled in your fridge until the desired planting time, just make sure not to store them with your apples.
  • Protect your plants from the elements with layers of mulch, to help keep their roots moist.
  • Plant other flowers in the top of your container such as polyanthus, pansies and violas. These annuals flower in the cooler months and will extend your flowering season.
  • After flowering, bulbs will naturally die down, and foliage will wilt and go brown. This is an important part of the life cycle. It is at this stage the bulb is storing food for the following season. Most bulbs can stay in the ground for years with new bulbs forming from the parent bulb.