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Re: Re: tulip longevity


>>>> Eight inches deep? Ugh...it was hard enough work planting all of
them 4-6 inches deep...and I only did the picking off the bublets thing
one year...the came up right at the surface of the soil, near where the
bulb shoot emerged so it wasn't too hard<<<


Melody, bulblets (daughters) are produced at the base of the bulb. The
reason they were so close to the surface is because they weren't planted
deeply enough. Freeze & thaw over winter forced them closer to the
surface. Additionally, they produced more daughters becuase they were
too close to the surface and consequently were too hot for their
dormancy during the summer. When their cool, dry dormancy requirements
aren't met, they tend to fracture - more daughters.


>>>not watering during the summer would be impossible on occasion...the
perennials are far more important to me than the tulips.<<<<


I didn't mean no water at all, just not like these people with
irrigation systems that go on every other day. If tulips are kept moist
during dormancy in summer, they can rot.


>>>local nursery man...assures me that newer varieties of hybrid tulips will not last more than 5-8 years ...eventually fail<<<

Probably true, but there are a lot of older varieties and heirlooms
(like Clara Butt) to choose from. Also, I would consider getting 5 years
of flowering from a 27 cent bulb to be not such a bad investment.


>>>species tulips are a whole other ballgame, according to him and these
are what I will eventually replace all of my tulips with when they die
out. <<<


I love species tulips, too, but you will not get the same type of
display from them. One of my favorites is T. turkistanica, puts on a
nice show that gets better every year, but no one believes me when I
tell them it's a tulip.


So the choice is yours. You can switch to species tulips, but you'll
have to rethink your design plans. You can plant short-lived hybrids
shallowly every year or two. Or you can purchase long-lived varieties
that put on a big show and plant them deeply. If you want a list of
long-lived varieties I can send them to you. Prof Gus de Hertog of U of
NC published the list in Horticulture Magazine. He is a world-renowned
bulb expert and on the Holland Bulb Institute's board, having written a
large portion of the guidelines followed in the Holland bulb market.


Kitty

If you have weeds, you don't have enough plants.
 Kitty: Eight inches deep? Ugh...it was hard enough work planting all of
them 4-6 inches deep...and I only did the picking off the bublets thing
one year...the came up right at the surface of the soil, near where the
bulb shoot emerged so it wasn't too hard...Also, the three beds where I
have them are perennial beds so not watering during the summer would be
impossible on occasion...the perennials are far more important to me than
the tulips. Also, we have a local nursery man, who 40 years ago emigrated
from Holland with his twin brother and parents, who owns a golf course
and the passion of his life is...tulips--every year his employees plant
about 5,000 tulips at the golf course and he assures me that newer
varieties of hybrid tulips will not last more than 5-8 years at best in
prime condition and will eventually fail to grow at all. His golf course
has approx. 45,000 tulips planted on it...it is gorgeous but he says very
high maintenance due to the short lived nature of the bulbs. Now, species
tulips are a whole other ballgame, according to him and these are what I
will eventually replace all of my tulips with when they die out. Melody,
IA (Z 5/4) "The most beautiful thing we can experience is the
mysterious." --Albert Einstein From: Kitty Morrissy Melody, Picking off
the bulblets?  Are you digging them up and replanting every year?Get
yourself some darwin hybrids, prepare the bed well, plant them 8 inches
deep, don't irrigate in summer, and every fall topdress with fertilizer. 
The bulbs will return. Kitty

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