DIY Flower Care

How to Plant and Grow Tulips

tulips growing in a garden

Spring wouldn’t be complete without tulips. Their cheerful blooms welcome in warmer weather and make a great addition to any garden. We’re here to let you in on all you need to know about growing show-stopping blooms at home. When your friends and fam’ are jealous of your flowers, you can send tulips online to help them bring some beauty into their own home.

Tulip Information

Before you plant tulips in your garden, check out some must-know info about these plants.

Common name: Tulip
Scientific name: Tulipa genus
Bloom time: April and May
Height: 8 to 24 inches depending on the variety
Width: 6 to 8 inches
Sun: Full sun
Water: Medium
Soil pH: 6.0 to 7.0
Soil type: Well-draining, rich
USDA Hardiness zones: 3 to 9

How To Grow Tulips

Tulips are a classic spring bulb flower along with daffodils and hyacinths. Don’t guess about how to plant tulips. We can help you grow tulips successfully. Rather than planting tulips from a seed or small plant, you plant a bulb that eventually grows into a plant. Many tulip varieties can produce beautiful flowers for multiple years.

When to Plant Tulips

While you might associate tulips with spring, many gardeners throughout the US need to plant these bulbs in the fall or early winter. Wondering why? Tulip bulbs need a chilling period to produce stunning flowers. A period of 10 to 14 weeks at 40ºF or below is perfect.

If you live in a warmer area, your winters might not provide the cold temperatures necessary for a proper chill. Your tulips will likely still bloom, but their flowers may be small and unimpressive. If you want impressive blooms but don’t have cold winters, don’t worry! You can buy pre-chilled bulbs and plant them in January.

Choosing a Tulip Site

Tulips love to soak in the sun’s rays, so look for a location with full sun. Make sure the area is well-draining; you can always add a few handfuls of compost to help improve your soil.

Planting Tulips

Planting flower tulip bulbs in a garden

Gardeners have traditionally planted tulip bulbs 6-8 inches deep, but recent research on tulips shows that all this digging is unnecessary! When it comes time to plant, simply dig a hole that is 2-4 inches deep and place one bulb in each hole. Space tulip bulbs two inches apart for a full look or further apart if you wish.

Once your tulip bulbs are in the ground, add a bit of granular fertilizer then cover them up with soil or mulch. Water thoroughly and then you’re good to go!

Growing Tulips

A flower bed with pink and purple tulips in the rays of sunlight against the backdrop of a beautiful white house

Once you plant your bulbs, you won’t have to spend much time caring for your tulips. That’s even more of a reason to add them to your garden!

If your area experiences a dry spell of more than a couple of weeks, you will need to water your bulbs. However, if you receive rain, you won’t need to water them.

After your flowers are done blooming, pinch off the flower stalks but keep the leaves in place. This helps the plant send energy to its bulb so it can get ready to bloom next year.

How Long Do Tulips Bloom?

It would be great if tulip blooms lasted forever, but that’s not the case. Tulip flowers last anywhere from a few days to a couple of weeks depending on the variety as well as the weather. However, their short-lived life just gives us another reason to enjoy them while they’re around.

FAQ

How Long Do Tulip Blooms Last in a Bouquet?

If you cut your flowers when they’re in bud form and provide the proper care, tulips can last up to 10 days! To help them last as long as possible keep them out of the sun, provide flower food, and avoid putting them in a vase with daffodils.

What Are the Different Types of Tulips?

There are thousands of varieties of tulips available for you to enjoy! Some of the most common types of tulips are single petal, double petal, fringed, and parrot tulips.

What Do Tulips Symbolize?

People commonly associate tulips with pure, deep love. The color and type of flower play a part in tulip symbolism.

Should I Replant Tulip Bulbs Every Year?

Many types of tulips produce beautiful blooms for a few years then start to decline. Giant Darwin hybrid tulips are one of the best choices if you want to enjoy tulips year after year. However, some varieties of tulips like triumph tulips bloom only one or two years and then start to decline. If this is the case, it’s best to dig up your tulip bulbs and plant new ones.

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