The Q&A Archives: Long Lived Tulips

Question: What is the best kind of tulip bulb to plant? I want one that will keep coming up for years.Is a Darwin tulip one that will keep coming up for years?

Answer: In my experience the Darwins will last for several years before they eventually multiply and dwindle away -- especially if they are planted at the deeper end of their suggested planting depth. More reliable for perennializing are the smaller and earlier blooming Kaufmanniana and Greigii tulips. These will last longest if planted in a spot with good soil, good drainage, and full sun. Deadheading, or removing the spent flowers, helps the bulbs conserve energy by preventing them from setting seed. Finally one of the most important things you can do to help your tulips bulbs last is to allow the foliage to ripen naturally in the spring unsightly as this process may be.

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