How to plant tulips
Tulips like all gardeners! Fortunately, their cultivation is of the simplest: following some small suggestions even those who are beginners can obtain great satisfactions.
Where to grow them?
Tulips grow well both in the ground and in pots. It should be noted that the latter option weakens the bulbs a lot and does not allow re-use in the following year.
Ground for tulips
In general they need a clayey and basic soil, but at the same time with a good drainage and rich in nutrients.
In the garden it is advisable to prepare the area with fairly heavy garden soil mixed, to the same extent, with peat and woodland or leaves (excellent that found under fruit trees). The use of manure is not recommended to enrich the area with nutrients: instead it is advisable to opt for synthetic products in which potassium and above all phosphorus are predominant.
Position of tulips
In every period of the year for the tulips the best positions are always those very sunny, possibly already from the morning. This will be of enormous help to avoid the onset of rot and to obtain abundant blooms.
The strong insolation also helps the fast drying out of the aerial part after the drying of the glasses and will allow us to make that area return as soon as possible decorative.
To get good results it is important to start early (already around September-October) with the processing of our flowerbed. It is advisable to dig deep (at least 40 cm) and incorporate the necessary amount of peat and soil improver. If it is still too compact we can possibly add some sand.
When to plant tulips?
The planting can be performed from September until the first 15 days of December, also depending on our geographical location. In general, early plantations give rise to early blooms and late plantations with delayed blooms. However, we must keep in mind that this programming is not always effective: a lot depends on the minimum temperatures reached in winter and high temperatures that can arrive prematurely. Much also depends on the specific cultivar.
Typically you work with a resistant metal blade, with a suitable bulb-shaped plant or with a planter. The depth of the holes is related to the variety. Botanical or low tulips are good at around 10 cm, hybrids and tall ones range from 15 to 20 cm. We increase the depth if our soil is very sandy. We respect the same measure for the distance between one bulb and another. After inserting, we cover and compact well, then we irrigate.
How to create a beautiful flower bed?
For a personal garden it is better to avoid placing the bulbs "in rows". They will give a too artificial look to the flowerbeds, borders or rocky areas. In general it is advised to create groups of one or at most two color-varieties, in a chromatic or contrasting scale. To obtain a "natural" effect the ideal is to drop the bulbs randomly and then insert them at that exact point. The only discriminating factor is their size: it is always a good idea to place the lowest and the rear ones on the front rows the highest ones.
For the borders it is good to orientate towards the botanical species, smaller and simple or towards the multiflora. In the rock gardens the Linifolia, Fosteriana, Clusiana and Kaufmanianna are very well placed, very low.
If instead we want cut flowers we insert the Triumphs, the Parrots, the Rembrants, the lily flowers and the Darwins. They also go well in the flower beds, but they will be ruined quickly in the case of (probable) spring rains.
Are the tulips to be explanted?
It is not always necessary. Small or botanical varieties, if they are well fertilized from flowering onwards (with a liquid product rich in phosphorus) can easily naturalize: it is possible to resort to a division every 4 years. The high hybrids, on the other hand, run out soon: it is advisable to remove them and collect the bulbils to be slowly grown in a vase before replacing them.
Cultivation of potted tulips
Pot cultivation is not at all difficult. However, it is necessary to opt for suitable varieties and always choosing large diameter bulbs.
We recommend opting for Cottage, Clusiana, Gesneriana, Kaufmanniana, small tulips.
Depending on their size they can be placed in bowls, but also individual vases or balconies. It is important to set up a drainage layer of about 4 cm. Good results are obtained using a mixture in equal parts of woodland, peat and sand as substrate. We insert the bulbs at a depth at least with respect to their height and make sure that they do not touch and do not touch the edges: this will be of great help in the prevention of rot.
We irrigate abundantly, but waiting for it to dry in depth before proceeding again.
In the same vase (and with the same devices) we can also insert daffodils, crocuses and muscari.