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Botanical Tulips

Botanical Tulips, Tulip Species, Rock Garden Tulips, Wild Tulips

Tulipa batalini,Tulipa humilis,Tulipa bakeri,Tulipa clusiana,Tulipa chrysantha, Tulipa dasystemon,Tulipa hageri,Tulipa sylvestris,Tulipa turkestanica

It is generally assumed that about 150 wild species exist in an area running roughly from Central Asia to Spain and Portugal. Some of these ‘real’ species are cultivated on a modest level, but most are interesting only to certain tulip enthusiasts.

  • Others, though, are attractive to the ordinary garden owner. It must be mentioned that the interest in wild species is increasing steadily – this phenomenon may have something to do with the fact that more and more wild plants are disappearing from our environment. Tulipa tarda was even pronounced ‘Flower Bulb of the Year’ in Holland in 1997, an award that says something about its rising popularity. The bulbs, offered in sizes 6/8 to 8/10, are smaller than those of ordinary tulips and are easy to naturalize.
  • Botanical tulips have a natural look. They stay nice and close to the ground and seem to be in flower as soon as they emerge from the soil. Their bright colors make them real eye-catchers in early spring. The striped leaves of many varieties make these even more appealing. And another important thing: wind and weather won’t bother these ‘wild’ tulips.
  • In early spring, when the garden, terrace, or balcony has little to offer in the way of visual interest, Botanical tulips brighten things up straight away. These are real early birds: they bloom before any other tulips. They catch the eye not only because of their extra early flowering but also because of their inflorescence and cheery range of colors. In addition, the graceful way the flowers open and their pretty foliage make them attractive before, during, and after flowering. In other words, Botanical tulips are simply bursting with nice characteristics.
  • Botanical tulips are great naturalizers. They return year after year and multiply and build up a small colony over time. These petite plants are well suited for rock gardens, along walkways, and in naturalized areas.
  • Tulips contain toxic glycosides, making them deer or rodent resistant. They are toxic to dogs, toxic to cats, and toxic to horses.
  • All tulip parts may cause severe discomfort following ingestion and may cause an allergic skin reaction. Wear gloves and other protective equipment when handling.

Guide Information

Hardiness 3 - 8
Heat Zones 1 - 8
Plant Type Bulbs
Genus Tulipa
Exposure Full Sun
Season of Interest Spring (Early, Mid)
Height 4" - 2'
(10cm - 60cm)
Spread 3" (8cm)
Spacing 3" (8cm)
Depth 4" (10cm)
Maintenance Low
Water Needs Average
Soil Type Chalk, Loam, Sand
Soil pH Alkaline, Neutral
Soil Drainage Well-Drained
Characteristics Fragrant, Showy
Tolerance Deer, Rabbit
Landscaping Ideas Edging, Beds And Borders, Banks And Slopes
Garden Styles City and Courtyard, Gravel and Rock Garden, Informal and Cottage

Most Popular Botanical Tulips

Tulipa ‘Little Beauty’ (Botanical Tulip)
Tulipa acuminata (Botanical Tulip)
Tulipa aucheriana (Botanical Tulip)
Tulipa batalinii ‘Bright Gem’ (Botanical Tulip)
Tulipa biflora (Botanical Tulip)
Tulipa clusiana ‘Cynthia’ (Botanical Tulip)
Tulipa Clusiana ‘Lady Jane’ (Botanical Tulip)
Tulipa clusiana ‘Peppermint Stick’ (Botanical Tulip)
Tulipa clusiana chrysantha ‘Tubergen’s Gem’ (Botanical Tulip)
Tulipa clusiana var. chrysantha (Botanical Tulip)
Tulipa humilis ‘Alba Coerulea Oculata’ (Botanical Tulip)
Tulipa kolpakowskiana (Botanical Tulip)
Tulipa linifolia (Botanical Tulip)
Tulipa praestans ‘Fusilier’ (Botanical Tulip)
Tulipa pulchella ‘Persian Pearl’ (Botanical Tulip)
Tulipa saxatilis ‘Lilac Wonder’ (Botanical Tulip)
Tulipa schrenkii (Botanical Tulip)
Tulipa sylvestris (Botanical Tulip)
Tulipa tarda (Botanical Tulip)
Tulipa turkestanica (Botanical Tulip)
Tulipa urumiensis (Botanical Tulip)

Growing Tips

When to Plant: Tulip bulbs should be planted in the fall, 6 to 8 weeks before a hard frost is expected. This is usually during September and October in the Northern Hemisphere.

Choosing Bulbs: Select plump, firm bulbs. Avoid any that are soft, damaged, or show signs of mold.

Preparing the Soil: Tulips prefer well-drained soil. If the soil is heavy clay, add compost or peat moss to improve drainage. A slightly acidic to neutral pH is best.

Planting the Bulbs: Dig holes or a trench if planting in a row, to a depth of about three times the height of the bulb. A good rule of thumb is to plant the bulb 8 inches (20 cm) deep. Place the bulbs with the pointed end up and flat, wider part down.

Spacing: If you’re planting more than one bulb, space them about 4 to 6 inches (10-15 cm) apart for large bulbs or 1 to 2 inches apart for smaller ones. The more space, the larger the bulbs will grow.

Watering: After planting, water thoroughly. Tulips need water to trigger growth.

Sunlight: Plant the bulbs in an area that gets at least 6 hours of sunlight each day.

Fertilizer: During the growing season, inorganic fertilizers are the best choice since they contain the exact proportions and concentrations of nutrients. They also dissolve easily so that plants can absorb them more efficiently. Be careful not to apply too much inorganic fertilizer; excessively rapid growth results in weak plants that are then more vulnerable to diseases and pests. Applying too much fertilizer can also burn plants. Flower bulbs being used for perennial displays and for naturalizing in borders and beneath shrubs will benefit from a weekly application of a potassium-rich liquid fertilizer just as their noses become visible in spring. Feeding can be stopped once leaves begin to yellow and die back.

Care After Flowering: After the tulips bloom, cut off the flower stem but leave the leaves until they yellow and wither. This allows the plant to store energy for next year’s bloom.

Replacing Bulbs: Tulip bulbs don’t always re-flower after their first year (especially hybrids). For a sure show each spring, many gardeners treat them as annuals and plant fresh bulbs each fall.

Pests: Watch out for pests such as rodents, which can eat the bulbs. If pests are a problem in your area, consider planting the bulbs in a wire cage buried in the ground.

Remember that while tulips are beautiful, they can be toxic if ingested, and the bulbs can cause skin irritation. Handle with care and keep away from pets and children.

You may want to review these useful guides

12 Top Performing Spring Bulbs that Come Back Year After Year!
Combining Tulips with Annuals and Perennials
Tulip Types
Compare All Tulipa (Tulip)
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Tulipa (Tulip)
Guides with
Tulipa (Tulip)
While every effort has been made to describe these plants accurately, please keep in mind that height, bloom time, and color may differ in various climates. The description of these plants has been written based on numerous outside resources.

Guide Information

Hardiness 3 - 8
Heat Zones 1 - 8
Plant Type Bulbs
Genus Tulipa
Exposure Full Sun
Season of Interest Spring (Early, Mid)
Height 4" - 2'
(10cm - 60cm)
Spread 3" (8cm)
Spacing 3" (8cm)
Depth 4" (10cm)
Maintenance Low
Water Needs Average
Soil Type Chalk, Loam, Sand
Soil pH Alkaline, Neutral
Soil Drainage Well-Drained
Characteristics Fragrant, Showy
Tolerance Deer, Rabbit
Landscaping Ideas Edging, Beds And Borders, Banks And Slopes
Garden Styles City and Courtyard, Gravel and Rock Garden, Informal and Cottage
Compare All Tulipa (Tulip)
Compare Now
Explore Great Plant Combination Ideas
Tulipa (Tulip)
Guides with
Tulipa (Tulip)

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