I am planning a bed of Fritillaria and Allium in a sunny corner beneath a lilac. I could not resist one bag of Tulip sylvestris–but the squirrels are a fact of life in my urban backyard garden. Should I try sneaking the tulips in among the resistant bulbs, or is that just inviting digging? Has anyone tried that method, or am I better off forcing the tulips to safely enjoy?
Also, if anyone has suggestions for a perennial ground cover to interplant with the bulbs, I’d appreciate that as well. I am currently thinking of covering the leaves later in the season with nasturtium, calendula, and zinnia.
My experience in New York City, is that the squirrels are always watching. However, you can plant the bulbs in little wire cages. You can make them yourself from hardware cloth or chicken wire, or buy them ready-made.
We use Plantskydd Animal Repellent. In our active browsing community that we garden in here in Michigan- the rabbits and deer fight over them.
When first planting, I spray the tulip and lily bulbs with Plantskydd RTU, then plant in the ground.To keep squirrels from following me around and curiously digging behind me or in my pansy containers, I sprinkle the granular on top of the bed after planting or directly into the container. When they 1st emerge in the spring, I either spray the emerging tips or put granular down if it’s raining. The rabbits will clear cut them if i don’t. When the leaves unfurl, I hit them again lightly on the undersides. When the buds appear, I do it again or the deer or squirrels will eat them or bite them off, drink the water from the stem and neatly place the forlorn bud on the ground. I keep most of my tulips in the front yard vs. all over the yard to keep an eye on them. It takes me longer to describe this here than to actually do it. Tulips are very expensive-but they are long lasting and worth growing.