Plant These VarietiesFor perennial results
Hoping For Colorful Blooms Year After Year?
Do you love tulips, and plant them, only to have them dwindle in size and sometimes disappear altogether after only a year or two? That is what you can expect from many of the gorgeous Darwin hybrid tulips that are offered each year. They are developed to perfection by Holland growers, and yes, they will give you one spectacular burst of bloom that first spring.
CHOOSE THE PERENNIAL ONES
I, and many other gardeners, have found certain types to be reliably perennial in the garden. If you choose from these and give them the proper growing conditions, a long reward of blooming year after year can be expected.
Besides some more reliably perennial Darwin hybrid varieties, other classes of tulips will also put on a spring show year after year. They, too, have colorful blooms, but may not be quite so tall, or might have a somewhat different flower shape.
Tulips are categorized into classes, and those which have been found to give top performance are listed in that way.
Use these choices to give your tulip plantings a more lasting presence in your garden.
Tallest of all classes, 30- to 36-inch | egg-shaped blooms | excellent cut flowers
At the beginning of the twentieth century, a search was on for older, â€œlost to to the tradeâ€ Â varieties of tulips that would grow well in the newly popular, cottage-style gardens. These remnants of old fashioned types were bred to produce the â€œDarwinsâ€. Later those were bred with the Red Emperor tulips to spawn what today is the dominant type bred and sold by Holland growers: Darwin Hybrids.
Very large size bulbs which produce big egg shaped flowers of golden sunshine yellow. I don’t think anyone would be disappointed in this dependable variety. It is much like the old ‘President Kennedy’, which I had planted in my first garden, along with ‘General Eisenhower’ (a red). These are strong growers and last for several years.
Ivory Floradale reappears, beautifully each year
Ivory Floradale is a Darwin opens a very yellowed ivory and then develops into a beautiful bride’s ivory white. It is very strong growing. Standing out in the spring garden amongst its peers, and reappearing every year. I have grown this in my garden a very long time. If it is difficult to find the named Â varieties, there may be collections sold which will give a more lasting display .
The Apeldoorns Are Reliably Perennial
They have beautiful blooms every year
The Apeldoorn family of tulips will all provide many years of great bloom. They come in a number of yellow to red colorations.The advantage of using these is the harmony of height , growing, and shape of the tulips for a more uniform bed of bloom.
There are ‘Beauty of Apeldoorn’, ‘Apeldoorn Elite’, ‘Golden Apeldoorn’.
The Emperors, T. Fosteriana
Very early bloom |Â Large flowers
All the Emperors are very large flowered and early blooming. The red ones may be the best known, and they are quite striking and just as hardy and perennial, but their color may be a bit strident for some landscape uses. On the other hand, white in the springtime is both a clear standout and quite amenable to mixing well within many color schemes. Â The white stands out in the garden and looks fresh and lovely. Mixes well with other flower colors (especially the blues of minor bulbs that blossom at the same time.) Â Because of their very early flowering, be sure to check on the coinciding bloomtime of companion plantings.
Late blooming | Elegant look
Look For These Varieties
Mostly Small Flowers | Closest to Wildflowers
Most of the specie tulips, being closer to the way tulips are found in nature are vigorous growing bulbs that recur each year.
Showy Flowers | Lowgrowing
Toronto – coral
Calypso – red/orange and light yellow edges
Red Riding Hood -red
Most of the Greigii tulips are reliably perennial
Medium size | Very colorful
Negrita – a very dark purple
Merry Widow – Cherry red with white trim
Kees Nelis -vibrant red with gold
‘Bronze Charm’, Specie Tulip
Tulips originated in regions of the steppes of Eastern Turkey and the foothills of the Himalayan Mountains. The conditions of their natural habitat consist of cold winters and hot, dry summers. Why, then, do they grow so well in Holland? The soil is sandy, and Holland growers have an intricate system of temperature and moisture control that they subject tulips bulbs to on a wide scale.  For most of us, that means we must plant them each year for a good show. The same way annuals are planted -new every year.
Single Late Class
Late blooming |Â Large flowers | Top performers
Single Lates are a class which bloom after the others. Class 5 was created from combiningÂ Darwin, Cottage, old Breeder, and Scheeper Hybrid Tulips, they are also known as “Mayflowering tulips”. AÂ very old variety known asÂ Dillenburg, anÂ orange-red, is one of this class and will perform well for a long time in the garden, provided you can find a source for it.
‘Queen of Night’
“Black”is a color that is aspired to by many flower breeders. Â This is one of the deepest colors, closest to black in the breeds of tulip. Cultivar created in 1895. This color is best used in tandem with lighter, brighter hues. One of my favorite pairings is ‘Pink Diamond’. ‘Maureen’ in white or ‘Dreaming Maid, another pale pink, mixes well, too.
Blushing Lady is leggy in my garden, but very elegant and lasted for many, many years. I highly recommend this one for the subtle color and graceful shape of the bloom. Be sure to purchase a number of ten or more so that you get the full effect. I would underplant with Alyssum citrinum, which repeats the soft lemon yellow infused into the flowers.
Queen Of The Bartigons
‘Queen of the Bartigons’ have persisted in my garden for more than twenty years. It is a lovely salmon pink introduced in 1944. I haven’t seen it offered for a number of years, so it may be hard to find.
Look for other pinks such as ‘Pink Impression’. ‘Daydream’ is a glowing orange which has staying power. It is tall with a large flower, and slowly changes tone as it ages. It is a very pretty addition to the garden.
TipsÂ For Perennializing
- Pick tulip types that produce the least number of new bulbs.
- Deadhead the blooms to keep strength in the bulb.
- Keep the foliage to renew the nutrition store for next year.
- Feed the plants while they are actively growing (including the roots underground).
- Lift and divide when blooming is reduced and there is too much foliage.
How To Plant Your Tulips
- How To Plant Fall Bulbs For Fabulous Spring Results Fall planted bulbs are the easiest way to have a beautiful spring garden just popping with color. Find out how to have a fabulous garden next spring.
A standout color choice, orange with a flame of violet, Princess Irene is an heirloom variety that is fragrant as well as long lived
‘Red Riding Hood’ as mentioned in this post, is a stronger grower that has beautifully striped foliage.
Propagate your Own
By lifting the bulbs after blooming, and planting offsets, tulips can be propagated. Â It may take a number of years for a small offset to grow to blooming size.
Why is bulb size so important? They are basically storage units, and the complete plant is within it. The ideal conditions of Hollands growing fields have produced all that is needed for that first year bloom.
This is one way to keep the bulbs from making offsets, ending up with lots of little nonblooming bulbs. It is an old fashioned technique, and not many gardeners take the time nowadays. If you would like to lift and store your bulbs over the summer, to replant in the fall, this is the method.
- Use fork to lift
- Shake off soil and remove bulblets
- Place bulbs in newspaper lined try or in netted bags
- Keep in a cool, dry place until replanting in fall
The Solution For Disappearing Tulips
That is, unless we find the varieties that can produce a perennial show, blooming delightfully year after year. That is no reason not to buy them each year – on the contrary, tulips are one of the joys of spring! Still, what if you could choose varieties that tend to endure for many years in your landscape? You would like that, wouldn’t you? Even if you choose the right varieties, a perennial display of tulips is not possible if mice or chipmunks are at work:
DISCOURAGING HUNGRY RODENTS
Local rodents (chipmunks and squirrels, especially) love to raid the tulip bulb beds. If that is the source of disappearing blooms, then protection through the use of bulb baskets or using plants that repel pests are methods to try. (Hint: planting other bulbs nearby will discourage these marauders. Daffodils, and Fritillaria imperialis are recommended)