When trying to grow flowers from planted bulbs in Nashville and Middle Tennessee all sorts of situations can occur that hinder positive results.
Animals issues are one of the most common. The area has squirrels, rabbits, deer, chipmunks, skunks, mice, moles and many other types that normally look for food and disturb or eat bulbs or emerging flowers.
To deal with squirrels, skunks and chipmunks digging up bulbs place hardware cloth, chicken wire or other selected barrier over the soil and secure in place. Realize that in some cases the animals are attracted by the type of fertilizer you are using, such as bone meal. If the latter consider not using as fertilizer.
If the animals are coming from underground, use an underground chicken wire cage. You can make your own cage or purchase in stores.
Apply homemade or commercial repellents selected by the kind of animal problem. Scare tactics can also be used such as plastic owls or hawks. Placing of dog or cat hair around the garden can also deter.
Select varieties with low chilling requirements. Chill bulbs before planting.
Improve soil fertility and fertilize at planting time. In the spring, spread an inch or so of compost. Feed plants with a low-nitrogen fertilizer following directions for the type of plant. Make sure the plants are receiving the recommended amount of sun or shade. Make sure the proper amount of water is reaching plants.
Make sure the bulbs are in a cooler area of your garden. Mulch after the ground freezes or after frost occurs.