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A happy garden-fork accident

Plant small bulbs in straight lines quicker than ever

Fine Gardening - Issue 147

I’ve always admired formal displays of bulbs, and have aspired to get the same equally spaced pattern in my own beds. One day, I took our garden fork and plunged it straight into the ground, intending to break up the soil before planting bulbs. When I extracted the fork from the ground, there were four holes left behind of equal depth, width, and space. I continued poking the ground in a semicircular pattern, before plopping a Spanish hyacinth bulb (Hyacinthoides hispanica, USDA Hardiness Zones 4–10) in each hole. This method made quick work of planting 50 bulbs. The fork can be wiggled around in the soil to make larger holes for larger bulbs, or it can be plunged less deep for smaller bulbs. I now enjoy a gorgeous uniform sea of blue each spring.


—Katherine A. Coker, McDonough, Georgia

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