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Long-lived Tulips

For those who asked for the list of long-lived tulips, I felt it was
important to include the whole article:

HortJournal October 1995

Tulip plants can continue to bloom for a decade or more, says August De
Hertogh, professor of horticulture at NC State U and one of the nations
leading authorities on bulb culture. He knows of a garden in Raleigh, NC,
for example, where the tulips are still blooming 28 years after they were

Good drainage is the most important factor in achieving repeat bloom. "If
I had a flashing neon sign," De Hertogh says, "it would say, IMPROVE THE
SOIL BEFORE ANYTHING ELSE." If the soil is clayey, adding organic matter
suchas compost, rotted manure, or peat moss, worked into a depth of one
foot will improve its drainage. You should also adjust the pH of the soil
until it is between 6 and 7.

The site should also receive at least 5 hours of direct sun each day,
though the bulbs will benefit from a little summer shade. Tulip bulbs
require a cool, moist winter and a warm summer, but the bulbs should not
be exposed to temperatures above 70 F. For this reason, De Hertogh
recommends setting the bulbs a full 8 inches deep (measured from the
bottom of the bulb to the soil surface) instead of the often recommended
6 inches. He also suggests planting annuals or perennials over the bulbs
because the shade of their foliage will keep the soil and the bulbs cool.
Along the same lines, tulip bulbs intended for repeat bloomshould not be
planted near the walls of heated basements because they may not get the
necessary winter chilling.

As you plant the bulbs, add 3-4 pounds of balanced fertilizer per 100 sq
ft. De Hertog likes to use Bulb Booster, a 9-9-6 combination of organic
and slow release nutrients developed by his colleagues at NC State. To
ensure subsequent blossoms, apply a couple more pounds of fertilizer to
the bed early each spring before the bulbs bloom.

Once the tulip flowers have gone by, the foliage must be allowed to ripen
and turn brown to replenish the bulbs for next years bloom. To test
whether the foliage is fully ripened, gently rotate and pull on the
flowers stem. If it comes off with hardly any resistance, you can safely
remove the spent foliage.

De Hertogh says that, contrary to popular belief, the species or
so-called botanical tulips are not more perennial than other tulips,
though some, such as the Greigii variety Little Red Riding Hood, do
perennialize. Until bulb growers come up with a truly perennial tulip,
gardeners can draw from the following list that can be expected to last
for at least several years.

Single Early: Yokohama

Double Early: Hoangho

Triumph: Arabian Mystery, Bing Crosby, Blenda, Delmonte, Don Quichotte,
Dreaming Maid, Frankfurt, High Society, Kansas, Kees Nelis, Leen vander
Mark, Los Angeles, Merry Widow, Negrita, Oscar, Preludium, Prince
Charles, Princess Victoria, Thule

Darwin Hybrids: Ad Rem, Beauty of Apeldoorn, Diplomate, Golden Apeldoorn,
Golden Parade, Golden Oxford, Gordon Cooper, Gudoshnik

Hollands Glorie, Jewel of Spring, Oranjezon, Oxford, Parade, Spring
Song, Striped Apeldoorn, Yellow Dover

Single Late: Demeter, Dillenberg, Ile de France, Make Up,

Parrot: Karen Doorman

Fosteriana: Candela, Juan, Orange Emperor

Greigii: Oriental Beauty, Toronto


I have a little more Id like to share but will put it in another post.


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