Yes, this year’s tulip season is now well underway. Let’s see which tulips are livening up the garden now, shall we?


The red tulips flushed with purple is ‘Couleur Cardinal’, a Single Early Tulip and long-time favorite. The Kaufmanniana Tulip ‘Early Harvest’ is in the pot to the rear.


Here’s a view of ‘Early Harvest’ from above, showing the mottled foliage. An odd thing this year is that the ‘Early Harvest’ bulbs in the container bloomed long after the ones I had planted in the ground.


Here’s the first of the ‘Princess Irene’ tulips, another Single Early, to bloom. The purple flush on the orange tepal is both bold and delicate.


Here are the first of the ‘Ballerina’ tulips, which tend to bloom later in May most years. ‘Ballerina’ is one of the Lily Flowering or Water Tulips.


This was one of three pots that I put in the garage and forgot about. You can see that the tulips are stunted because I let the pot get too dry. Tulips overwintering in pots don’t want a lot of water, but they do need some. Hopefully I’ll still get some decent blooms.


The Species Tulip Tulipa clusiana ‘Lady Jane’ is blooming in the Left Bank Bed.


Near ‘Lady Jane’ is a close relative, Tulipa clusiana var. chrysantha ‘Tubergen’s Gem’.


Here are some ‘Annie Schilder’, a variety of Triumph Tulips, blooming in the parkway.


I placed a pot of ‘Keizerskroon’ Early Single Tulips on the tree stump in the Lamppost Bed. The strong reds on a yellow background suggest flames and are noticeable from far down the street.

More tulip reports to come as the season progresses.

58 Comments on “Tulips!

  1. Early Harvest is still a firm favourite of mine. Love Princess Irene too. And the two botanical tulips you have are very pretty. I want to plant more of those down at the bottom of my rockery for a more natural look.

  2. Your ‘Couleur Cardinal’ is lovely, I bought some last year after admiring yours but have to admit to being disappointed; maybe they prefer your colder weather. I wonder if the tulips in the pot that you left in the garage are later because they weren’t so cold although I don’t imagine that you heat your garage! Looking forward to all the rest of your tulips, I can never get enough!

    • It’s an unheated garage and not well insulated. I think that the buried pots are probably better protected from the cold. I think my big mistake was letting the pots get too dry – tulips don’t need much moisture over winter but they do need some.

  3. Your enthusiasm for tulips is contagious. Love the color combination in top photo of ‘Couleur Cardinal’ and ‘Early Harvest’.

  4. Looks like a bit of tulip mania going on here. I like the colors of the tulips and their foliage. The little sprinkle of alyssum in the pots is a nice touch.

  5. Princess Irene is a beauty! I love the species tulips. They have largely finished flowering here, but we have plenty of other tulips strutting their stuff. Do you dig up and replant Princess Irene, or replace?

  6. Thanks for your report, Jason. You encouraged me last year to try tulips in pots; they did well and it was a fun project.

  7. I love, love the ‘Couleur Cardinal’! I made a note so I wouldn’t forget to order some of these this fall–did you buy these from John Scheeper’s or somewhere else? I’m happy to report that the one pot of tulips I planted using your method of burying it in the garden over the winter was successful. Though the display of blooms isn’t as impressive as yours–I forgot to water it often enough:( My tulips are all pretty much done, so it’s a delight to see all of your lovely blooms, Jason.

    • I did get ‘Couleur Cardinal’ from John Scheeper’s. I have been consistently happy with their quality and they have a good selection.

  8. Beautiful! What a treat for the eyes after a long winter.

  9. Lovely, lovely, lovely! This must be a good year for tulips, as I am noticing beautiful stands of them everywhere. The rabbits discourage me from growing them, but maybe I can create a bunny-proof spot for them.

    • Except for the early warmth and subsequent frosts that damaged some early leaves, I would agree that this is a good year for tulips.

  10. Beautiful tulips! Have you always had them in pots? Do you thin them out from time to time? I think that’s a brilliant idea to keep critters at bay. I wonder if Asiatic lilies would do just as well in the pots?

    • I didn’t always grow them in pots. At first I grew them in beds but I found them easier to deal with in containers. The smaller species tulips I still grow in beds. The ones grown in pots are treated as annuals – replaced every year.

  11. When I try, yet again, to grow tulips in pots this fall, I’m going to plant Princess Irene since those have grow well for me in the past. I really like the Couleur Cardinal. Everything looks great! 🙂

  12. Gorgeous tulips, especially P Irene. My tulips are going over now, sadly.

  13. Such a lovely collection! None of my Tulips planted in pots survived. Ironically, several out in the garden beds (the ones the rabbits usually eat) actually bloomed this year. My plan in the next few days is to dig up every Tulip I can see and plant them in the same spot–surrounded by Daffodils. Hopefully, that will discourage the rabbits. 😉

  14. Hello Jason, I’ve been looking forward to your tulips for some time. In the first picture, the set of tulips in the foreground, which are dark red are real showstoppers; they glow like fire embers.

  15. Early Harvest positively glows so that has to be my favourite although they are all lovely, such a fine mixture of colours!xxx

  16. Wonderful. You are right Jason, pots really are the way to grow tulips. It also solves the problem of unsightly dying foliage.

    • Certainly pots are the best way to go for hybrid tulips. I do find that species tulips fit well into beds and borders.

  17. I love all tulips .. But your Couleur Cardinal are special … I must look out for them in our spring..

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