I Get the Tulips Planted!
Yep, all 90 of them. I planted them in containers for the first time, having decided that tulips weren’t really a good fit in my perennial beds. For starters, the dying foliage flops over other emerging plants. Also, they are often short-lived, and since tulips need to be planted deep, replacing them can be disruptive to established plants.
But Judy loves hybrid tulips. She picked the varieties we ordered and decided how they should be combined in the containers. Here’s what we did:
Combined tulip ‘Flair’ (red and yellow, early, 14″) with ‘Bellona’ (yellow, early, 14″).
Combined ‘Flair’ with ‘West Point’ (yellow, lily-flowered, 20″, mid-season).
Combined ‘West Point’ with ‘Kingsblood’ (red, early, 24″).
Combined ‘Kingsblood’ with ‘La Cortine’ (yellow and red, late, 26″).
Combined ‘La Cortine’ with ‘Coleur Cardinal’ (red and plum, early, 12″).
Combined ”Coleur Cardinal’ with ‘Rainbow Warrior’ (yellow with red edge, mid-season, 22″).
Combined ‘Bellona’ with ‘Rainbow Warrior’.
Filled a container with ‘World Expression’ (cream and red, late, 24″).
We put 10 tulips in 16″ containers and 8 tulips in smaller containers – probably could have squeezed a couple more into the larger containers. My understanding is you can stick as many tulips as you can into a container, as long as the bulbs aren’t touching. If you’re interested in how to plant tulips in containers (or how I did it, anyhow) it’s pretty simple:
- Pull out all the container plants and dump them on the compost pile.
- Pour the potting mix or soil from your containers into a larger container and mix with a few handfuls of compost.
- Fill the containers with the refreshed mix until it is 6-8″ from the top. Throw in some bulb food if you want, following label directions for quantity.
- Place the bulbs in the container. You can crowd them in there but they should not be touching.
- Fill the rest of the container with mix, and give it a good soak with the hose. The containers should not dry out over winter.
- Store in the garage or basement, a place where the bulbs will be chilled but the container won’t freeze.
And now, to dream of tulips until spring …