BULBS are now available through mail order companies and will be in most garden centres ready for planting.
Bulbs look best when planted in clumps and the more there are the better the show.
Planting in lines diminishes the display so even if you only have a few, plant in a clump and colour-contrast with some seedlings or the foliage of an adjacent shrub.
Anemones (pictured) and ranunculi represent very good value economically and in terms of the display they make.
Anemones come in pink, white, red and blue in single and double flowers and are great for massed displays in garden beds or pots.
Ranunculi are a little brighter in shades of red, yellow, orange, pink, burgundy and white and as such lend themselves to colour co-ordinating in the garden.
Why not try a blend of pink, burgundy and white, particularly if you have shades of grey and charcoal in house wall or fences?
Alternatively a bright sunny mix can light up the garden in spring for about six weeks.
There are a couple of really special varieties that make traditional borders and these are the grape hyacinths and soldier boys.
Grape hyacinths stand no more than about 10-20cm high in a vivid bright blue and are great for a massed border or pockets in rockeries and in the garden.
They will naturalise over time.
Grape hyacinths will grow in full sun and are also available in white or double flowered blue, but it is really hard to go past the traditional variety for hardiness and brilliant colour.
Soldier boys, or lachenalias, flower early to mid spring and are in red and golden yellow multi-tones within the one flower.
They are also great in bowls or troughs.
They reach about 15-20cm high, so make the perfect bulb to border a path.
If you are growing bulbs in pots then use a special bulb potting mix.
If you want to try a different bulb this year then look at the ornamental alliums or onions.
Most of these have burgundy purple flowers on long stems, so they really make a feature in the garden over many weeks in late spring.