Daffodils, also known by their botanical name narcissus, are easy and reliable spring-flowering bulbs. This means by May, they can start to look a little worse for wear and may need some extra care to guarantee they bloom next year. Speaking on YouTube in 2014, Alan Titchmarsh shared his top tips on how to prep daffodils once they have finished flowering.
“Stay your hand. What it’s doing, both stalks and leaves with the help of sunlight, is producing food that’s sent back down into bulbs to fuel next year’s flowers.
“So leave it a good six weeks.”
When the six weeks are up, Alan explained that you can scissor it off.
To help them bloom beautifully next year, the expert suggested giving them a feed.
As an organic gardener, Alan used blood, fish and bones to feed his daffodils.
He sprinkled the feed around the daffodils using around a handful.
Alan said: “A couple of handfuls to a clump is not too generous and that way the combination of taking off those seed heads allowing the sun to photosynthesise through the leaves and stalks that feed the bulbs, and using fertiliser around them will guarantee you flowers next year.”
The Royal Horticultural Society (RHS) also recommends waiting until the foliage turns yellow before cutting them down.
This is usually six weeks after the flower finishes.
The website said: “Don’t be tempted to tie the leaves into a knot either, to keep them neat.
“Daffodil leaves should be allowed to photosynthesise for as long as possible, so they can fully replenish the energy reserves in the bulb, for a good flowering display the next year.
“If you move the leaves too early, you may reduce flowering next spring.”
The plant will also naturally produce new bulbs over time, and for those wanting to propagate them, the RHS explained that you can do so by seeds, division and chipping the bulbs.