If you are like me, you are always looking for ways to improve even the smallest and most difficult parts of your yard.
In the past, I’ve had small gravel areas I’ve wanted to tidy up and make look nice.
So the question of will daffodils grow through gravel, is something I have looked into in an attempt to spruce up these difficult spots.
Let me deal share my experiences with you to hopefully answer the question once and for all.
So let’s jump in.
Will Daffodils Grow Through Gravel?
Yes, the likelihood is that daffodils will grow through gravel. It will depend to some extent on the soil beneath the gravel but daffs will generally find a way of working their way through the gravel and blooming unless the conditions are particularly unfavorable.
Like lots of plants daffodils are persistent creatures and will grow through a variety of mediums.
A while ago, when I was looking to move, I put down some landscaping fabric and covered it with gravel.
A few months later, there were a series of bumps where daffodils were coming through.
I had to make holes in the fabric so they could come through.
Then after I moved, something similar happened. I put down a large sheet of tarpaulin and laid gravel on top of it.
The next spring, a row of daffodils were poking through!
So from my personal experience daffodils have no problem growing through gravel or slate chippings.
I also have a friend who regularly places a layer of gravel and small stones (around 3 to 4 inches) on many of her flower beds.
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And I can safely say that has not prevented a whole host of bulbs, including daffodils, tulips, hyacinths and crocuses, from growing very happily.
My previous neighbor also used to grow daffodils along their limestone gravel drive.
So we have plenty of first-hand experience of daffodils growing through gravel.
Ideally, I would say composted bark or bark chippings are a more suitable substance to lay on bare soil, as this will eventually decompose.
But if you are wanting to know if daffodil bulbs push through gravel, the answer is a big yes.
Unless, of course, we are talking of an excessively large amount of gravel!
What Plants Will Grow on Gravel?
I have already given you a few examples above of plants that will grow on and in gravel.
And if you have witnessed dandelions and cowslip growing through the tiniest cracks in heavy pavements, then you will know almost anything is possible in the plant world!
Within reason, plenty of plants will thrive in shingle or gravel, as it does, to an extent, depend on the soil and aspect.
Small bulbs such as grape hyacinth, chionodoxas and crocuses love free-draining spots in the sun. Multi-headed narcissus and species tulips with small stems are also good bets.
For a special treat, woodland strawberries grow in pretty much anything and have the added benefit of being delicious!
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For areas that get full sun, alkaline, mat-forming plants are particularly suitable, for instance creeping ceanothus, camomile, low-growing campanula and aubretia.
Herbs are a particularly good choice for long, narrow gravel-filled gaps that seemingly have poor growing conditions. Creeping thyme is a favorite of mine to grow in these spots.
More specifically a few species will come up again and again if you google plants that are good for gravel gardens, namely:
- Cotton lavender: with its silvery-grey leaves and lovely fragrance, the cheerful yellow flowers of cotton lavender brighten up any spot in the summer.
- Bugle: Bugle is perfect for a gravel driveaway, thriving in shady areas and able to handle the occasional battering as it might get stomped on accidentally. It is popular with bees too.
- Purpureum: This plant can deal with poor quality soil underneath gravel, and as long as it has a bit of sun it should grow well.
- Nigrescens: If ever there ever was a plant suited to a gravel driveway this is it! It is the perfect complement to the pale brown colors of a drive, it looks great and is durable too.
- Euphorbias: This versatile plant doesn’t need much care and comes in a range of colors, with some heavily scented flowers.
- Phlomis: With their bee-friendly flowers, Phlomis are a good match for any gravel garden and come in different colors.
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Yes, daffodils will certainly grow through gravel.
I have first-hand experience of it and so do many others.
It does depend to some extent on the soil and size of gravel, but for the most part it shouldn’t prove a problem for daffs.
Lots of plants can push their way through gravel, so if you have a gravel border or an area you think is beyond help it probably isn’t.
There almost definitely is something you can grow there to brighten it up.