For bright, vivid color that celebrates the start of the growing season and creates tons of curb appeal, try tulips. Garden pro Linda Vater uses tulips to create a spectacular spring show every year. She has some great tips for ordering, planting and getting the best tulips for your garden.
Shopping for the best tulips
To prepare for spring, choose your favorites well before fall arrives. This way, when it comes time to order, you’re ready to purchase, instead of still selecting varieties while your must-haves are going out of stock. Linda relies on Colorblends and John Scheepers when ordering, because she always trusts her bulbs will arrive healthy and at the right time for planting. If you're planning to shop at a local garden center, here’s how to sort out the best ones in the bin.
Planting the best tulips
Since Linda orders hundreds of tulips every year, it’s important that planting them is as simple as possible. Once she receives the entire order, she dumps the bulbs into a wheelbarrow, gently mixes them and scoops from here as she plants. This guarantees a natural-looking distribution of color and bloom time across the entire front yard.
Next, where the tulips were already pulled earlier in the year, she digs wide holes, about 6 to 8 in. deep, and plants 50, as opposed to 15, bulbs at one time. For the biggest impact, stagger these clumps close together, so the tulips come up almost like a bush or in a dense stand.
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Choose great tulip varieties
See six of Linda’s tried-and-true favorite tulips, and what she loves about them, in the photos below.