Gardening Tips : Care of Tulips After Bloom

Uploaded by eHow on 11.11.2008

Hi, this is Yolanda from And in this segment, we're going to talk about
how to take care of tulips or tulip bulbs after they're done blooming. Now, tulips are
so beautiful when they bloom in the springtime and the blooms last a few weeks to a couple
months. But when they start dying back, the greenery just turns brown and ratty, and you
just don't know what to do with the bulbs. So let's take a minute and we'll talk about
it. So my theory on plants is if it's green and lush, leave it alone. If it starts turning
brown, cut it down. Well, these are still green, so you might want to leave them just
a little bit longer. Maybe chop it halfway. As soon as they're done blooming, I kind of
chop all my plants about halfway down so that they just are shorter and they don't look
so ratty, but they're still green on some of the leaves, so they're getting photosynthesis
and the bulb is multiplying quicker. Now, once the tulips have done blooming, they're
not going to bloom 'til the next year again. So I just leave them in my flowerbeds and
plant lilies and calla lilies and canna lilies and all types of different plants that bloom
in the summer through the fall in the same areas. So the important thing with tulip bulbs,
at least in the Northwest, is that we make sure that they don't get too dry in the summer
because if you put them in a bed where they never get any water all summer long and we
get the hot, warm summers in the late August in the Northwest where it just cooks even
100 degrees for days on end. And what happens if they're dry, you're going to lose them.
Same thing, if you plant them in a really wet area and they're sitting amok year round,
you're going to lose them because they're too wet. So my key is raised beds, and don't
plant them eight inches deep like the books tell you. Only plant them about three inches
deep. I have never lost them at three inches deep, and I always lose them if I plant them
too deep, at least in the Northwest because we don't get a lot of snow, and snow actually
insulates. So if you're living in Northern climates where there's lots of snow, then
they'll actually be protected and they'll do fine for the next year. Vice versa, if
you live in San Diego or a really warm climate and you want to get your tulips to bloom the
second year, they won't bloom outside unless they actually get a chill time. So let all
the greens die back to nothing, and then just throw them in a paper bag and put them in
the refrigerator, or better yet, the freezer for about two to three months and then turn
around and plant them again. And you'll find you should get them to bloom a second or third
or even fourth time. So tulips are great in mild climates because you can just leave them
in the ground and they'll come back from year to year to year, but the trick is don't let
them get too dry or too wet. And you can always leave the in containers even, and they'll
come back from year to year in the containers. They're a very easy plant to grow.