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Parade of Tulips

April 26th, 2011

I didn’t used to like tulips all that much, but they’re starting to grow on me. Perhaps I’d only been exposed to the big bright yellow and red ones (I’m still not a huge fan of those). I do like tulips that are purple, white, and buttery yellow. Most of mine run in those shades, but I do have a yellow and red tulip in my garden that was labeled as a ‘Mickey Mouse’ I planted the first year we moved in.

Tulips aren’t usually perennials here in NE Ohio, at least not the hybrid tulips. They often bloom nicely the year after you plant them, then you might get smaller blooms for another year or two but they eventually die out. I read that if you plant your bulbs deeper in the soil you will have better luck having them come back year after year. I’ve been lucky with most of mine, they seem to come back and some of them multiply each year. I can’t remember for sure what varieties I have, ‘Negrita’, ‘Shirley’ and ‘Mickey Mouse’ are the only ones I can remember.

I’m pretty lucky this year that I have so many tulips blooming. Generally the deer munch them off right before they bloom. This past winter was hard on the deer because it was so cold and we had snow cover for so long. As a result I haven’t seen as many deer in my garden and I get to enjoy my tulips. Of course this may be the reason they always come back and multiply. Since they never get to bloom they put all their energy into producing bulbs.

I haven’t planted any new tulips in 4-5 years. I think this fall I’ll finally add some more to my gardens. I would love to buy a lot of heirloom ones from Old House Gardens. They specialize in heirloom tulips and they’re all quite beautiful.

If you’ve never been to Longwood Gardens during their tulip show, I’d highly recommend that you go, it’s amazing! They plant over 200,000 tulip bulbs in the fall for the show. You’ll see tulips you never knew excited existed!

What’s your favorite spring blooming bulb?

27 Comments to “Parade of Tulips”
  1. Jennifer Fisk on April 26, 2011 at 6:24 am

    Daffodils are my favorite because they just look happy.

    Reply to Jennifer Fisk's comment

  2. Carol on April 26, 2011 at 8:22 am

    I just love tulips! My wedding bouquet was stems of red tulips tied with a white bow. The rest of the flowers were white tulips streaked with red or red tulips streaked with white. I rarely have cut flowers in the house, but I can never resist a bouquet of tulips in the spring.

    Reply to Carol's comment

  3. Brittany P. on April 26, 2011 at 8:22 am

    It would have to be my grape hyacinths. They are the first thing to bloom in my bulb garden. I also really enjoy the daffodils that follow the hyacinths. I have tried to grow tulips here and they come up each Spring but alas, they die down and never even bloom. Some people have told me that they just don’t do good down here in South Georgia. :( maybe some of the old types might work here…hmmm..I’ll not give up yet b/c I do love tulips. Thank you for sharing yours! I love the pink and yellow ones..gorgeous..Savanna says she loves those bright yellow and red ones, the mickey mouse..

    Reply to Brittany P.'s comment

  4. Dana on April 26, 2011 at 8:51 am

    My favorite are probably irises, but that’s usually late spring. I do love tulips just for the sheer variety though.

    Reply to Dana's comment

  5. Kathy on April 26, 2011 at 9:39 am

    I’ve never seen an “excited” tulip…do you mean “existed?”

    Reply to Kathy's comment

    • Susy on April 26, 2011 at 9:45 am

      Yes thanks, it seems no matter how often I re-read to look for errors some seem to slip by.

      Reply to Susy's comment

  6. Kimberly on April 26, 2011 at 9:42 am

    A favorite? Whatever is blooming! I am blessed that our new farm is loaded with bulbs. It’s so amazing & I am seeing things I’ve never seen before. Looking forward to adding tulip petals to spring salads soon!

    Reply to Kimberly's comment

  7. Misti on April 26, 2011 at 9:55 am

    What tulips can grow here in N. Texas and in Florida don’t last long so I have never been one for tulips. But yours are beautiful!

    Reply to Misti's comment

  8. Daedre Craig on April 26, 2011 at 10:27 am

    I really like grape hyacinth (Muscari). We always had them at my parents house. They spread and multiply fairly fast and when they start blooming the blue-purple color is amazing. I brought some to my new house and I’m hoping for a nice show this year.

    Reply to Daedre Craig's comment

  9. Anne on April 26, 2011 at 10:33 am

    I love ordering from Old House Gardens. I have ordered hyacinths, tulips, daffodils and irises so far. Every year I try to order a couple more as I can afford it.

    Reply to Anne's comment

  10. Heather on April 26, 2011 at 10:46 am

    Susy, like you I didn’t use to love tulips but last week here in DC I saw some INCREDIBLE tulips that I fell in love with. I’ll be posting some images over on my blog today. Have a beautiful Tuesday!

    Reply to Heather's comment

  11. Terry on April 26, 2011 at 10:48 am

    I really enjoy multicolored tulips and the ones with little frills on their edges. When I worked in the floral department at Whole Foods we would get hundreds of tulips but only a handful of the frilly ones. It took a lot of will power to not buy those.

    Reply to Terry's comment

  12. Amber on April 26, 2011 at 11:24 am

    My tulips come back every year, and we live 10 minutes from downtown Cleveland! Even after my entire front yard was dug out for waterproofing, some of the bulbs were tossed into the middle of my yard when they were putting the dirt back in and they still come up in the spring. Love those guys. 6+ years now. :D

    Reply to Amber's comment

  13. goatpod2 on April 26, 2011 at 11:48 am

    I took some pictures of our tulips blooming yesterday! I like all Springtime flowers.


    Reply to goatpod2's comment

  14. KimH on April 26, 2011 at 6:56 pm

    I love all spring bulbs but I have to say, I love crocus the most, because they’re the harbingers of spring after a long snow-filled winter like we had this year.
    Last year I bought loads of spring bulbs from Wayside Gardens when they had a pre-fall sale. I got everything for 50% off in late spring to be shipped in the fall.. Great bulbs and they’ve come up everywhere in my little wild sanctuary..

    My other most favorite spring flower is a hellebore (Lenten Rose). Its not a bulb but it is wonderful. :D

    Reply to KimH's comment

  15. Rue on April 26, 2011 at 8:28 pm

    Susy – You might enjoy this blog:

    Jane grows the most amazing selection of tulips. The last couple of weeks’ posts are filled with them.

    Reply to Rue's comment

  16. Jennifer on April 26, 2011 at 8:31 pm

    I’ve become partial to grape hyacinths as well…such a vibrant color. My other fave bulb is allium giganteum. So cool! I’m planning to plant some this fall for next year.

    Reply to Jennifer's comment

  17. Jessica Swaray on April 26, 2011 at 10:18 pm

    I totally agree, I remember those red and yellow ones from when I was young, and they’re just so….dated? Generic? But they’ve grown on me too, especially those lovely light colored ones and the purples. When we finally buy a house I’m def. going to plant some similar to yours. Pretty!

    Reply to Jessica Swaray's comment

  18. Lisa on April 27, 2011 at 4:41 pm

    Crocus are my favorite…which I cannot grow here. We get alliums, amaryllis and in the summer daylilies.

    Reply to Lisa's comment

  19. deedee on April 27, 2011 at 7:26 pm

    tulips are one of my favorites!

    Reply to deedee's comment

  20. Katrina on April 27, 2011 at 8:42 pm

    Your pictures are beautiful! I’m envious of all your tulips!

    Reply to Katrina's comment

  21. Corner Garden Sue on April 27, 2011 at 10:41 pm

    I enjoyed seeing your tulips. I did lose some this winter. I can’t think of a favorite bulb, but my favorite early bloomers are hellebores. I plan on planting lots of bulbs in my new planting area this fall, and then planting mostly annuals in between them.

    Reply to Corner Garden Sue's comment

  22. Jinger on April 28, 2011 at 2:57 pm

    Daffodils are my favorite – yellow my favorite color. Second is the various Tulips. One day Mark and I will make it to Michigan for the tulip festival!!! Thanks for sharing your beauties!

    Reply to Jinger's comment

  23. The Prudent Homemaker on April 29, 2011 at 7:15 pm

    I lOVE tulips, but lately, ranuculus have really got my attention!

    Reply to The Prudent Homemaker's comment

  24. Sunita on May 3, 2011 at 2:13 pm

    I am wondering if there are any tulip gardens/shows in Ohio. I just moved here in Ohio from PA and missing Longwood gardens visit which we used to do every year 2-3 times.

    Reply to Sunita's comment

    • Susy on May 3, 2011 at 2:27 pm

      I’d try your local city botanical garden, they would probably know where the closest one it. The one at Longwood Gardens probably ruins you to any others though! I’ve heard Michigan has some great shows, I may try to head up there someday.

      Reply to Susy's comment

      • Sunita on May 3, 2011 at 10:00 pm

        Thanks Susy…will try finding more from local garden. Holland, Michigan has Tulip festival this weekend but thinking of driving 7 hrs is lil too much with kids.

        to Sunita's comment


This is a daily journal of my efforts to cultivate a more simple life, through local eating, gardening and so many other things. We used to live in a small suburban neighborhood Ohio but moved to 153 acres in Liberty, Maine in 2012.

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