How Deep to Plant Crocus Bulbs

Crocus must surely be the true spring’s herald. This plant provides winter garden color naturalize better than any other bulb– that means they spread and come back to full life year after year with minimum care for an even larger and showy display. As a bonus, deer, rabbits and squirrels rarely bother this little crocus corm.

About Crocus bulbs

How deep to plant crocus bulbs


Crocus bulbs (also called “corms”) grow underground, just a few inches below the soil surface. They are planted in late summer and bloom in autumn to early winter. These hardy little flowers plants offer beautiful variety in color that stands out against the late-winter landscape. They bloom in yellow, purple, lilac, white, and orange and are a delightful start to the bulb bloom season.

Crocus bulb is native to the Middle East and Central/Eastern Europe, northern Africa and Asia. Typically, there are three popular varieties of Crocus; Dutch (C. vernus), snow (Crocus chrysanthus), and saffron (C. sativus) – Dutch and snow Crocus are vernal, which means they bloom in spring while saffron is autumnal, so their planting times may vary according to the type and your USDA Hardiness Zone.

Snow Crocus: Early Blooming Crocus

Snow Crocus is a hardy perennial bulb best suited for cooler climates where it can be planted in late summer and bloom in autumn to early winter. With narrow, grass-like leaves, these bulbs were distinguished by their beautiful gold or yellow colors, but have been bred in a full array of colors today. Snow Crocus bulbs are also very versatile in growth, as they can be planted amongst other later blooming bulbs.

Large-Flowered Dutch Crocus Bulbs

Dutch or giant Crocus is another popular variety of Crocus bulbs. These bulbs are treasured for their large, colorful blooms, larger flowers with a full array of beautiful patterns and colorful solids. This variety is taller, at 4-6 inches, ideal for naturalizing lawns, best grown in warmer areas, and blooms from mid-to-late summer.

Note: Both Dutch and snow varieties grow well in USDA Hardiness Zones 3-8 and should be planted six to eight weeks before the first frost date. In Zones 3-6, you might want to plant crocus corms in September and October, while those in warmer climates might want to grow in November.

Striking Saffron Crocus

How deep to plant crocus bulbs

The saffron crocus (Crocus sativus) is a popular bulb that can be planted in early spring and bloom in late winter or early spring. This variety of Crocus bulbs is also known as the saffron crocus, purple Crocus, autumn crocus, autumn saffron and autumn-saffron. This variety is arguably the world’s most expensive spice, used in thousands of dishes from the Middle East to India. Saffron has a rich and distinct flavor and aroma described as “fishy” or “medicinal” by some. The spice is made from the dried stigma of a crocus flower and is harvested by hand, which requires many years of training to do properly.

How far down do you plant crocus bulbs? (three inches deep)

Unlike other plants, the crocus bulb doesn’t mind company. You can plant them in groups of 3-9 corms for bright clumps of bloom. The plant also likes well-drained soil and partial to full sun.

If you’re growing crocus bulbs in your garden, place them three inches deep and 2-3 inches apart. This depth ensures they have enough oxygen for healthy growth and provides extra insulation in the colder months.

You can also use a container to grow your crocus bulbs- the container should be at least four inches deep and have drainage holes.

Related Article: 6 Great Zone 5 Bulbs to Plant in the Spring