tulip bulbs - Knowledgebase Question

Question by WJBOLSER
February 16, 2010
will tulip bulbs survive in the east valley? plant in ground or pots? thanks

Answer from NGA
February 16, 2010


Tulip bulbs need an extended and pronouced winter chill in order to bloom. While you can grow them in your garden, they are best planted in containers so you can easily dig them and provide a period of "winter" chill by placing them in your refrigerator. The bulbs are usually purchased in the fall (September or October) and planted immediately in the garden. They usually bloom in December or early January. After the flowers fade, prune off the flowering stem but allow the foliage to die back on its own. After the leaves have withered down, cut them from the plant, dig the bulbs and store them in a cool, dry location. In the fall, place them in your refrigerator for about 12 weeks. They can be planted in late December or early January and will usually bloom in about 2 months. Some gardeners don't bother with the chilling requirement for rebloom year after year preferring to toss the bulbs after bloom and purchase new pre-chilled bulbs each fall.

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