Alan Titchmarsh reveals his secret to keeping your garden daffodils blooming for as long as possible

The celebrity gardener has a hack to make daffodils last longer

Alan Titchmarsh
(Image credit: Getty Images/Mike Marsland/ WireImage)

Gardener, writer and presenter Alan Titchmarsh is no stranger to a gardening controversy as he’s not afraid to speak his mind about all things garden and gardening. But his latest tip is more helpful than controversial as he reveals how to make daffodils last longer when you plant your bulbs for spring or even during the current flowering period.

After Alan’s rewilding comment controversy followed by his stance on lawn mowing on Sundays he expressed last year, we expect nothing but strong opinions from this prominent figure of the UK’s gardening scene. But we love it when he shares something particularly useful as his hack on how to prolong the life of our garden daffodils.

Daffodils are notorious for their brief flowering period, signalling the imminent arrival of spring with their bright blooms. So if we can keep those beauties around for that little bit longer, you bet we'll do whatever it takes. And this is what it takes, according to Alan Titchmarsh.

Large grey pot plants with yellow flowered plants on the patio. A modern brick and timber framed family house with four bedrooms, built by Lisa Sower-Lewis and Anthony Lewis in 2016 near Chester.

(Image credit: Future PLC)

Alan Titchmarsh on how to make daffodils last longer

Writing for Country Life, Alan Titchmarsh recently shared his thoughts on everything to do with daffodils, which includes listing out his favourite varieties and how to stop them from ‘fizzling out’, as he called it.

The answer? When you plant your daffodil bulbs, avoid shallow planting them in dry soil and feed them some blood, bone and fishmeal.

Tree espaliered against a grey wood clad wall with flowerbed of daffodils and gravel below.

(Image credit: Future PLC)

‘Shallow planting in dry soil often leads to fizzling out — especially with bulbs planted in grass — but much depends on the resilience of the variety,’ Alan wrote. ‘A handful of blood, bone and fishmeal at flowering time will help fuel bulbs for next year.'

'Whatever the variety, allow the foliage to die down after flowering for six weeks (you can snap off faded flowers, but no elastic bands and knots, please). After six weeks, the leaves will have passed sufficient food down into the bulbs to fuel next year’s flowers and you can chop off the lot with impunity.’

That’s right. It’s not just about how you plant your daffodil bulbs but also how you take care of them once they flower, which can set you up for success or failure the following year.

Daffodils in the garden

(Image credit: Getty Images/MaxBaumann)

Steve Chilton, garden expert at LeisureBench, agrees, ‘Fertilise daffodils in early spring while they're growing. This will encourage more of a bountiful bloom when it's the right time. And ensure their soil never dries out.’

But Steve has an additional trick up his sleeve to help you prolong the life of your daffodil borders. ‘Plant different varieties of daffodil. This way, you'll have daffodils that bloom at different times constantly extending the flowering season in your garden. If you want to have Daffodils for as long as possible, this is an ideal way to do so.’

Steve Chilton portrait
Steve Chilton

Steve is a passionate and knowledgeable garden expert with several years of experience within the field. As the director of LeisureBench, an industry-leading garden furniture company, Steve has developed strong expertise for all things nature and plants. 

It turns out, there are many ways to maximise your daffodils’ blooming window!

Sara Hesikova
News Writer

Sara Hesikova has been Ideal Home’s News Writer since July 2023, bringing the Ideal Home’s readership breaking news stories from the world of home and interiors. Graduating from London College of Fashion with a bachelor’s degree in fashion journalism in 2016, she got her start in niche fashion and lifestyle magazines like Glass and Alvar as a writer and editor before making the leap into interiors. She feels the two are intrinsically connected - if someone puts an effort into what they wear, they most likely also care about what they surround themselves with.