Tulip (Tulipa)

Quick facts and care essentials

• True bulb
• Zones 1-24, 28-45
• Full sun
• Regular watering during growth and bloom

Hybrid tulips come in a multitude of colors, including bright shades, pastels, and even near-black. Flowers very widely in form, too, from the classic egg-shaped blossoms to those that look like lilies or peonies.

Bloom season ranges from mid- to late spring, depending on variety. Most need an extended period of winter chill for best performance, but even in cold-winter areas they may not put on a good show after the first year. To encourage repeat flowering, feed with a nitrogen fertilizer before bloom; be sure to allow foliage to yellow and wither before removing it after bloom. In mild climates, refrigerate tulip bulbs for 6 weeks before planting, and treat the plants as annuals.

Plant bulbs in fall, setting them three times as deep as they are wide; space 4 to 8 inches apart, depending on the ultimate size of the plant.