Grape hyacinths always rise up to the surface.....I pop a layer of compost over them in the autumn....and do very well in my garden in France too (though I had to astop somebody picking them last year!)...they are almost a weed they multiply so quickly.
I tend to plant most bulbs in pots and then keep them in or behind the greenhouse until they come into flower. At that point you can see where the gaps are in your garden and then just dig a hole and put the contyents of the pot straight in. It's one of my few concessions to instant colour gardening.
I shall be up to the garden centres in the next few weeks to pick up their heavily discounted bulbs - did the most amazing planters last years when the GC priced all packs of bulbs at 99p, even when they had been £7.99.