I still like the hybrids tulips. They are beautiful and showy and make a stunning display when planted in wide swaths in the garden. But after the first year they become “unreliable”, at least here in my zone 5 garden.
They might come back up the second year, or they might not. They might just send a leaf up, or they might have leaves and smaller blooms.
It’s pretty hit or miss so I usually planted them every fall and tore them out in the spring, treating them like annuals.
The species tulips, on the other hand, should be more reliable and return each year. So I planted about eight different species type tulips last fall, placing a recycled plastic label, on which I had carefully written the name of the tulip, next to each one.
What turned out to be not reliable was the marker I used to write the names of the tulips on the plastic labels. The writing faded out over the winter and now you can’t even tell I wrote the tulip names on the labels.
I know it was the marker because I had previously used these labels in the vegetable garden and had written “Beets”, “Turnips”, etc. on them, and that writing remains on the other side. Where was that marker when I needed one last fall?
Since the labels are now worthless, I’ve yanked them all out, just in case someone stops by and sees a label for “beets” in the middle of a patch of species tulips and thinks I’ve gone all daffy about flower names.
So with no labels, I’m going to have to go back to the online catalog where I purchased these and compare the blooms to the catalog pictures to figure out which is which.
This first one, pictured above and here appears to be Tulipa biflora. The flowers are just starting to open.
I’m pretty sure this is Tulipa humilis, ‘Persian Pearl’. When these open, they should have gold coloring in them. Hopefully we’ll see that in a few days or maybe tomorrow, depending on the weather.
I have six more types of species tulips out and about in the garden. As they bloom, I’ll figure out what/who they are, and make a little map for myself for next year. And I’ll find a better marker to write on the plastic labels.
Update on the Antique Plant Stand.
Thank you to everyone for putting up with my annual April Fool’s Day post yesterday.
Most of you figured out that it was a made up story. As much as I wanted it to be true, it wasn’t. It was a rite of spring here, to post something “less than true” on my blog on April 1st.
A tiny bit of it was true. That is an antique plant stand, and the chicken foot orchid sits on top of it. My grandfather really was born on Nov. 16, 1901, and yes, my backside is probably broader than I think when I bend over!
The rest, well, I wish it had been true. That would have been fun!
If you enjoyed that post, you might also enjoy these:
New Plants (2006)
Will there be a 2010 post? I’ll never tell (at least not in advance).