Thursday, December 28, 2017

Tulips as Cut Flowers

A new year. A new project.

Since I have this flower obsession it only makes sense to share it with others who love fresh flowers. It is a laborious project that my back can surely tell you about. Many tulips were lovingly put in the ground (sounds so simple) with compost added then covered again. They went on a hillside so drainage wouldn't be a problem when our Spring rains come. The temperatures are in the teens here so the roots should be growing 8 inches below the soil as the soil temperature is warmer there. Hidden but very busy.

The months of March, April and May they will be dug out with bulbs attached, hosed off and stored in a 38-40 F cooler til market days or florists call. The reason the bulbs are left attached is they have a long storage life until you actually cut them from the bulb and add to a floral arrangement. You will also get longer stem length. Many start showing color at the same time so this helps the grower, me, have a little more time to sell them. 

The tulips that will be available are all billowy doubles that you don't see for sale in your grocery store. These are luxurious and look like peonies. Real showstoppers. Can't wait to share photos with you.

A note here about adding bonemeal. If you are planting with a cat or dog helping they will go bananas over the bonemeal. I used in some beds and didn't in the others for that reason. I think it just as wise to sprinkle fertilizer on the soil when the tulips first start poking up through the ground in the Spring. 

Watch how the Smithsonian gardeners plant tulips here. That soil in the video looks completely different than mine. 


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