water and hardiness
Most tulip hybrids are cold hardy. When the air temperature drops below 5℃ for 3 to 4 weeks, it actually promotes the differentiation of flower buds and improves the flowering rate of tulip bulbs. Also, tulips don’t need a lot of water, so they should only be watered once when you plant them. In general, accumulations of water should be avoided, as this can cause the tulip bulbs to rot. When storing tulip bulbs, make sure that the ambient air is as dry as possible so that they do not rot.
Tulips prefer a location with good sunlight. Whether planted in a pot or in the garden, tulips need at least 7 hours of sunlight each day to produce beautiful blooms. Tulips don’t need shade.
Tulips prefer rich, well-drained, alkaline soil. They also do well in poor, sandy soil, but not clay soil, which can affect tulip bulb growth. The addition of coarse sand and humus to loam increases the air permeability and allows the water to drain off well, creating optimal growing conditions for the garden tulip. If the soil is acidic, adding lime can increase the pH of the soil – this is better for tulips as they are adapted to soils with a pH of 6-7.
The best season for planting tulips is from late autumn to early winter, when the temperature drops below 10ºC at night. If the temperature is too high, the roots will grow poorly and your tulips will become unhealthy. When planting tulips in the garden, it is best to place them in a spot with good sun exposure and good ventilation.
Before planting tulips, first remove any weeds from the area. Then dig a big hole and put the tulip bulb in it. The planting depth and spacing of tulip bulbs should be at least twice the bulb diameter. If the bulbs are planted in clay soil, the recommended planting depth is 5 – 10 cm. In loose soil, the recommended planting depth is 15 cm. After placing the tulip bulb in the hole, carefully cover it with soil. Finally compact the soil with a board or spade.
You can put a net under the bulb for easy collection after the tulip has bloomed and the plant has withered. You can also plant a bulb directly in a special flower bulb basket and bury the basket in the ground. It is not recommended to plant tulips neatly in a regular pattern or with equal spacing between bulbs as this can make them look less natural.
Tulips can also be planted in flowerpots, tubs, stone troughs, or other decorative containers, but drainage holes must be provided at the bottom of the container. For large containers it is best to have a 3cm layer of coarse stones or pieces of brick at the bottom for good drainage. Planting depth in containers should follow the guidelines above, with at least an inch of soil under each bulb, although they can be slightly closer together. The surface should be covered with a layer of gravel to retain moisture and keep the containers looking attractive.
Tulips have a low water requirement. Whether planted in a flower pot or in the garden, a single watering after planting is usually sufficient. During the flowering period, potted tulips will need occasional watering to maintain soil moisture and prevent drying out. When flowering is over, continue to maintain soil moisture until the leaves wilt.
The soil in a small pot dries out more easily, so more frequent watering is required, but water accumulation should be avoided. Rainwater is sufficient for garden planted tulips, except in extremely dry weather when additional watering may be required.
Tulips are often used as single use bulbs which are then discarded after flowering, or the bulbs are dug up and stored in the summer so no fertilizing is required. If the soil is in poor condition, mix in some balanced fertilizer or bone meal into the soil when you plant the bulbs.
Timely pruning of wilted flowers can avoid excessive consumption of nutrients and energy during the fruiting period, thereby preserving nutrients in the bulb, extending the flowering period of other flowers, and improving plant vitality.
If you want to collect seeds from tulips, wait for the pods to dry out and burst open after the flowers have faded. Cut the scape on the lower level after collecting the seeds. In general, it is recommended to only plant each tulip bulb once in a lifetime. After flowering, the bulb can be dug up and discarded along with the withered leaves.
When tulips are planted in the ground, each bloom can last 1 to 2 weeks. Once cut, a flower can last between 7 and 15 days. It is recommended to harvest tulips when the bracts are enlarged and the outer perianths are just macerating but not fully developed. When harvesting the flowers, use sharp secateurs to cut the base at the level of the scape and immediately place the flowers in a vase filled with clean water to avoid water loss.
Tulips have parallel veins, as is the case with most monocots. It is better to cut their leaves in one motion with a sharp knife. The vascular bundles of the stems and leaves are connected, so that the surface layers of the herbaceous stems are injured when the leaves are torn off by hand.
Tulips are photostatic, so the light they receive should be evenly distributed; This will avoid bending their stems. For example, if the stems bend, you can adjust the orientation of the vase by 45° every day to slowly return the flowers to their original growth direction.
Tulips rarely flower well in their second year, so they are usually replaced with new bulbs. Bulbs can also be harvested at the end of the flowering period in summer and then replanted in the fall. Once the parts of the plant have yellowed and withered, the bulbs should be dug up and all debris and leaves removed. Throw away all the bad onions and dry the healthy ones. The onions should be stored in paper bags and kept in a cool and dry place. They can then be planted again in the fall.