These spring-flowering bulbs are a perennial favourite in gardens. There are a wide variety of different tulips to choose from and planting the bulbs in autumn will ensure a delightful spring display. Tulips were the flowers responsible for the crazy speculative Dutch market place of the 17th Century, now known as Tulip mania, when 12 acres of land was offered for one tulip bulb! Now of course a small fortune is not required – everyone can enjoy tulips in their garden.

Growing Tulips:

Tulips are planted later than many other spring bulbs, in mid or late Autumn. Plant bulbs as soon as you can after you purchase them as nature never intended for bulbs to spend time above the earth. Discard any bulbs that look rotten or damaged before planting. Tulips are full hardy and in fact need a period of cold in order to bloom.

Tulips should be planted at a depth of around 10-20cm in the garden bed or in a pot. They are extremely easy to grow and require little work after the initial planting. For this reason they are perfect for children or novice gardeners to grow.

Bulbs will form from offsets if you want to increase or replenish stocks of bulbs. Tulips can also be grown from seed though this is not usually bothered with by the average home gardener.

Tulips prefer to grow in full sun but they will tolerate some shade as long as the area they are planted in is not too wet or in danger of becoming waterlogged over the winter. The soil should be fertile and relatively nutrient rich and it is best if the soil is neutral or slightly alkaline. The tulip bed should ideally be in a location that is sheltered from strong winds.

Tulips flower between March and May and are great in garden beds in combination with other earlier flowering spring bulbs and some annuals that will be in bloom over the summer. Tulips are fantastic additions to gardens where you want to achieve a flowering display all year round.

Be bold in the number of tulips that you plant. This is a flower that always looks better and more dramatic when planted in a crowd – a few tulips on their own tend not to look quite as good.

Why grow tulips in the garden?

Tulips come in such a wide range of colours and shape variations that you are sure to find some that will go perfectly in your garden. Tulips are easy to grow and create a cheerful display with vibrant hues and pleasing shapes. They can suit either a formal or informal planting scheme, based on which variety you choose.

Quick Facts

Latin Name
Tulipa gesneriana L.