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How To Plant Tulip Bulbs That Will Thrive

Updated on April 29, 2018
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Gardening Techniques How To Plant Tulips

Article By Sharon Stajda

Tulips are perennial bulbs that grow best in zones 3 through 8 in the United States. If planted in warmer climates it is best to dig the bulb up when warmer weather arrives, and store the bulb for six to eight weeks in a cool dry place, then before the Fall freeze replanting the bulbs. As mentioned. If you plant tulip bulbs right, you will enjoy them each spring for many years to come. Planting tulip bulbs is easy, just follow the directions below.

Selecting Tulip Bulbs

Select tulip bulbs by varieties, and types by flower color, and form, local adaptation, and bloom time. Buy high-quality tulip bulbs, free of bruises or soft spots. Good sources to buy tulip bulbs: local nurseries, websites and mail-order catalogs that have a good reference.


Arranging Bulb Delivery And Storage

Make arrangements to have your tulip bulbs delivery, so you have them about six weeks prior to planting season. Plant the tulip bulbs in late summer to early fall in cold-winter climates. Plant in late fall to early winter in mild-winter climates. Keep the tulip bulbs Chilled, after they arrive (some come pre-chilled), this can be done by placing them in a paper bag and keeping them in the refrigerator for six to eight weeks. This coolness will help assure the bulbs will trigger and give top performance.

Choosing The Planting Bed And Preparing The Soil

When planting your tulip bulbs - Select a sunny location. Prepare the soil, if necessary, by incorporating ample organic matter. (Soil preparation is not always necessary if drainage is good.) Tulips can grow in most type of soil, although they prefer a sandy soil rich in organic materials. Tulips do poorly in clay soil. If your soil is clay add some organic materials as well as a bit of sand. This will improve the texture of the soil. Tulips strive in fast-draining soil that dries quickly. They do poorly in wet soil, wet soil can cause the bulb to rot.

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Digging The Hole To Plant The Tulip

Time to dig the holes. Dig holes 2 1/2 to 3 times as deep as the bulb is wide, usually about 4 to 6 inches deep. In mild-winter climates, plant deeper - up to 8 to 12 inches deep. Leave 4 to 6 inches between each tulip bulb. Add tulip bulb fertilizer to the bottom of the hole(about 1 inch) and roughly mix it into the soil.

Planting The Tulip Bulb

Place the tulip bulb in the hole, Make sure they are pointed side up, root side down. The bottom of the bulb should rest firmly on the bottom of the hole. Cover with soil pat soil down lightly.Soil temperatures in the winter can fall below 60 degrees Fahrenheit. This works to keeps the tulip bulbs in a hibernation state for the winter months. It is good practice to add mulch to the bulb bed with a good organic material. This will work to protects the soil from extremely cold temperatures. I recommend mulch to be 2 to 3 inches thick to effectively keep the soil the proper temperature.

Water the tulip bulbs thoroughly.

Tulip Trivia So--Where Did The Tulip Get Its Name?

How did the tulip get its name? The story is that the tulip born a great resemblance to the turban headgear worn by many people in the Middle East. Which was also pronounced, and spelled as"toliban". Changed into Latin, this word becomes "tulipa". The tulip does I suppose resemble a turban?

In history, the Dutch will be remembered for their passion and production of tulips. After 400-plus years, the Dutch people still enduring a love affair with the tulip. First introduced to Holland in 1593, the tulip has become a lasting symbol for the country Holland. Ask anyone, anywhere to name things that remind one of the Dutch or Holland, as a rule, they will respond with the answer tulips, windmills, and wooden shoes.


Is Holland The Country That Tulips Really Originated From

It's a widely-spread misconception that tulips and other bulb flowers are native to Holland? The fact is that almost no bulbous plants are native to Holland. To find the true origin origins of the tulip, we must look to central Asia. Asia is the prime site of their genetic center. The tulip originated from Tien-Shan and the Pamir Alai Mountain Ranges near modern-day Islamabad, close to the border of Russia and China. From these prime growing areas, tulips spread to other regions China and Mongolia to the east and to other regions to the west and northwest.

The fact is tulip's love mountainous regions. They are found growing at very high elevations in the mountains, which means that they are often covered with a thick layer of snow during the winter period, which stands to protect them from the severe cold.

Given this natural proclivity for high places, it's all the more remarkable that the Dutch should become known for growing tulips when their country is largely situated below sea-level and "enjoys" winters that are wetter than they are cold. As a rule, these are conditions that make for poor tulip growth. Holland tulip growers invented systems that provide winter soil ample drainage. Through the draining the surplus water quickly from the fields into the ditches into the canals. The Dutch system provides great conditions for growing tulips.

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    • profile image

      Keaka77 9 years ago

      I just started a garden in my back yard a few weeks ago. Me and my wife love flowers. Hopefully it turns out beautiful.

      Egyptian Cotton Sheets

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      anonymous 10 years ago

      Nice lens! I'm a bit spoiled here tho, in a town 25 miles away they have a tulip festival every year, the sides of all of the streets are planted in tulips. The dutch dress in their native clothes, scrub the streets, bake their goodies, party, and you can tour the windmill.

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