Container Grown Tulips - Knowledgebase Question

Boston, MA
Avatar for gtwg59
Question by gtwg59
November 7, 1997
If I plant a window box with tulip bulbs, can I leave the box outside during the winter, or should I bring it in? The box I intend to use is approximately 9" tall, 10" wide and 21" long.

Answer from NGA
November 7, 1997
Although you can try leaving the window box outside, it's better to bring it into a place where it will be protected from getting too much water, attack by rodents, or warm days where the bulbs may begin to grow prematurely.

I would suggest that after planting you bring the window box into the garage, unheated shed or someplace with temperatures about 35-50 degrees F. Be sure to protect bulbs from little chewing critters. When the temperatures outside match the ones inside...reinstall your window box, watering the box well. At this point, keep the planting medium moist, but NOT soggy. Stand back and watch the show!
To plant tulips: Use 4 parts rich garden soil mixed with one part peat moss. Add a small handful of bone meal and mix it in well. The box should have some broken pottery or small stones placed over the drainage holes. The tips of the bulbs should just show at the soil surface.

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