|High Pressure over our farm this morning!|
|Covering up the bulbs with soil.|
After the frost melted this morning our soil was still a bit too sticky-wet for total machine planting, but since the forecast for rain was still a bit South (see radar image above) we saw an opportunity. Hand placing lily bulbs into a trench is a bit more work, but it helps us to get a head start on planting season. That is, of course, if it doesn't rain and make "mud" in the rows - in which case everything is then hauled back into the barn cooler. After the bulbs are quickly put into place, the tractor covers up the row, but fertilizer is not spread until the lilies are beginning to emerge. Our winters are too wet to mix nutrients into the soil while tilling, any fertilizer dug into the soil before lily bulbs can utilize it would simply wash away and be wasted.
The lilies shown in the photos are planted much closer together than what is recommended for the home garden. These are large two-year old bulbs that only need one more summer in the field before being packaged for sales and they were simply being moved from another section of field that needed to be reset. Larger lily bulbs are placed further apart, just like in the garden.
Shipping is just around the corner... and as the weather permits safe delivery, orders going to southern states will be filled next week for selected areas. We'll ship as many orders as possible that the computer says can be completely filled. About 80% of the bulbs have been packaged and the rest will be processed over the next three weeks. A few more bulbs need to come out of the ground where the soil is still semi-frozen, and excepting northern areas where winter still has sharp fangs, most of our lily bulb orders will be out the door by the second week of April unless you specifically requested late April or early May delivery.