What, if anything, can be done when a blue mold (penicillin) is found on...

Asked January 17, 2015, 11:08 AM EST

What, if anything, can be done when a blue mold (penicillin) is found on bulbs? If the outer layer of the bulb is very soft, should it be removed?

Reading about the bulb, it says NOT to cut the stem to the bottom after flowering, yet others say to do this. Does this stem help to produce nutrients for the bulb?

Broome County New York bulbs flower bulbs

3 Responses

Some mold on bulbs is normal, the bulb can be planted and will bloom under appropriate conditions. If the bulb feels soft, it has begun to rot, and is best discarded. If just the outer layer is soft, you could try planting it after removing that layer, but it will be less likely to bloom. If this is a bulb that you had intended to plant last fall, just put it in some potting soil, and leave it until spring in the coolest location in your home. Do not water it now. You could then plant it in the spring. It probably won't bloom this year, but might next year.

A bulb stem doesn't enable significant photosynthesis, and will soon turn yellow, then brown. It is best removed.

Thank you for such an informative response. This is the first time I ever had a problem with penicillin mold, and one of the two bulbs had a very soft outer layer that I removed before the whole bulb rotted. Thankfully, I guessed right. I am not too optimistic about the bulbs with mold, but I'll try to keep them as long as I can. I will remove the stems after my other plants stop blooming.

This is an excellent website. I will email any time I have a problem and need professional help.


Sincerely,




I am glad to have this opportunity to help people. Thanks for letting me know this was helpful.