How To Plant Tulips In Containers

All varieties of tulips thrive in a sunny, protected location with well-drained soil. Tulips should be planted in a border behind perennials because as the perennials’ foliage emerges, it will hide the dying foliage of the tulips. Before planting, incorporate a lot of well-rotted organic matter to amend heavy clay or sandy soils. You could add some horticultural grit to the bottom of the planting hole if your soil is particularly dense. Your garden’s conditions are not optimal. Learn how to grow tulips in challenging environments.

When to plant tulips

Although tulip bulbs can be planted as early as mid-October, experts believe that planting them in November is best since it lowers the chance of tulip fire, a fungus that is eradicated by cooler temperatures. Tulip bulbs can be planted as late as December or even January, and they should still blossom the following spring.

In the spring, you can purchase enough potted tulips in pots at the garden center to make one or two pot displays if you completely neglected to buy bulbs.

How to plant tulips

In the fall, use a garden trowel or bulb planter to prepare a planting hole, then lower the bulb into it pointed end first. Tulips should be planted 20 cm deep, or around three times the height of the bulbs, with a distance of 5 cm between each one. Plant tulips in large quantities for the finest effect.

In containers, tulips flourish quite well. Plant the bulbs three times their depth in the peat-free, all-purpose compost, leaving a few centimeters between each one, and fill the container with compost halfway. Increase with compost. Monty Don teaches how to plant tulips and evergreens in a container in the fall in this clip from Gardeners’ World:

For a longer-lasting show, you may also put tulips and other spring bulbs together in a container. Kevin Smith teaches how to arrange tulips and other spring bulbs in a container in this No Fuss video tutorial:

A movable flower feastgrowing tulips in pots and containers

A cactus that can endure any level of neglect, geraniums on a windowsill, fresh basil for cooking… People have been arranging natural elements in and around their homes in pots for thousands of years. Perhaps you’ve been admiring the beauty of tulips and wondering if they would thrive in a pot or container as well, and if they would require any particular attention or care. All of your inquiries on how to grow tulips in pots or other containers will be addressed in this blog.

How to grow tulips in pots or containersthe best containers

You’ll need a sizable container for tulips. You need a minimum exterior height of 15, and a minimum diameter of 18. Your blooms will have less of an impact and the bulbs might not grow as well if you use a smaller container. You’ll need to acquire a container with at least a 24-inch diameter if your pots must remain outside during the winter. In this manner, the soil in the pot will be sufficient to isolate the bulbs and prevent them from freezing. Your key theme should be drainage, drainage, and more drainage, as with any flower bulbs. Tulip bulbs left in standing water may decay, so make sure your container has openings for water to flow out of.

Growing tulips in pots or containerssoil and planting

The same as for your garden, fall is the best season to plant pots and other containers. Filling your container with soil from your garden may seem like a quick fix, but it’s better to use a blend of potting soil and sandy soil to simulate the soil the bulbs originally originated from. No fertilizer is required. The depth at which you would plant the bulbs is 6-7. However, you can disregard the recommended bulb spacing and place the bulbs in a circle, very near together but not touching.

How to grow tulips in pots and containersafter planting

After planting, give the area plenty of water. Terracotta pots or pots with a diameter of less than 24 inches should be kept indoors in a cool location where freezing temperatures are unlikely if you live in hardiness zones 4–7. The ideal temperature is from 35 to 45 degrees F. The tulip bulbs just require a small amount of water per week at this stage.

Tulips in pots or containersgoing outside and aftercare

Your tulips will start to emerge from the ground in the early spring. Place them outside in a sunny area at this time. Water them whenever you water your other flower bulbs once they are outside. You can remove the faded blossoms by pruning them, but you should keep the foliage until it has completely wilted. In this manner, the nutrients might return to the bulb for the following season. These bulbs may, however, be worn out and prepared for composting. A great excuse to start thinking about your new color palette for 2019!

Beautiful tulips in pots or containersthe best varieties

Stick to one variety per pot for the most beautiful result, as they will all bloom at the same time. Shorter tulips are ideal for pots and containers, including Double Tulip Exotic Emperor, Tulip Princess Irene, Tulip Queensland, Triumph Houston Mix, and Miniature Tulip Batalinii Bright Gem.

Tulips at your doorstep

Do you want to brighten up your deck, foyer, or windowsill with some color? In containers or pots, tulips thrive and require very little maintenance. Visit our often updated website and wander around to find the ideal tulips for you. Your bulbs will arrive at the ideal planting period if you order today.

planting tulip bulbs

In late October, November, or December, plant your tulip bulbs. The cold weather aids in the eradication of viral and fungi illnesses that can infect bulbs and lurk in the soil. Traditional disease prevention strategies include planting late.

I enjoy planting tulip bulbs far deeper than the recommended depth of most gardening guides, which is double the bulb’s depth—in this example, 8 cm (3 in). Tulips are less likely to try to reproduce and are more likely to bloom year after year if they are planted deeply.

Tulips can be arranged singly or in small groups amid perennial plants in your borders, but if you’re planting a lot of bulbs, it could be simpler to dig a trench or hole that is approximately 20 cm (8 in) deep. Cover the base of your garden with 5 cm (2 in) with cleaned sharp sand, horticultural grit, or decomposed compost if you are gardening in heavy soil. In order to promote the growth of next year’s blooms, you may also add a little amount of bone meal and mix it with the grit and soil at the bottom of the hole or trench.

The tulip bulbs should be spaced about 8 cm (3 in) apart, pointy end up, and covered with soil. Again, you can mix grit at a ratio of around one-third grit and two-thirds infill dirt if you garden in heavy soil.

If you don’t have enough room, put a layer of earth over the bulbs first, then add another layer of bulbs before covering the hole. You can still overplant the tulips without harming them because there is still adequate soil above the bulbs.

Use a conventional bulb planter or bulb planting trays to make the process of planting tulips easier. A bulb planter is wonderful if you’re planting among grass or herbaceous plants and bushes. When you press it into the ground, it acts like a huge apple corer and removes a core of soil. Put a little amount of grit or used compost in the bottom of the hole, insert the tulip bulb, and then backfill the hole with grit and compost as you would in a trench.

planting tulips in a pot

In the final weeks of October, November, and December, plant tulip bulbs in containers. Make sure your pot has sufficient drainage and use high-quality, peat-free compost.

It’s best to layer bulbs in what the Dutch refer to as a bulb lasagna—multiple layers of bulbs, one on top of the other, with compost in between—to achieve dense and floral spring pot displays. The biggest and most recent flowering bulbs are planted deepest, followed by the tiniest and most recent on the top layer. Emerging shoots from lower layer bulbs simply curve around anything they come into contact with that is seated over their heads and continue to grow.

When done this way, the bulbs should be spaced about 2-3cm (1-11/2in) apart rather than the single layer they would be in a pot. Before adding the next layer of bulbs, cover the first layer with 5 cm (2 in) of potting compost and bury it up to 28-30 cm (11–12 in) deep.

Remove the bulbs after flowering and put them in the ground before summer. To prevent the tulip from wasting energy trying to make seed, leave the foliage alone but prune away any dead flowers.

How deep of a pot should tulips be in?

  • Use chicken wire to cover planting holes, a fence, repellant spray, or container gardening to keep animals away.

Is there anything happier than a large tulip field blooming in the spring? The profusion of vibrant blossoms is a sight for sore eyes after a protracted winter of cold and snow. You may build and enjoy a robust tulip show in your own yard with these tactics and pointers.

How to Choose Tulips

Hybrid tulips make up the majority of the tulips you see in landscape plantings, as well as those offered for sale at garden centers and home improvement shops. For the greatest impact, hybrid tulips normally need to be replaced every year. (We’ll cover how to persuade them to return below.) When given the proper growing circumstances, species tulips will return year after year in zones 4 to 7. These have smaller flowers and pointier petals than hybrid tulips, and they are shorter.

Individual tulips don’t flower for very long, especially the hybrids. However, there are types that bloom in the early, mid, and late seasons at various periods. When buying, choose a couple cultivars from each bloom time category for a long-lasting display.

Where to Plant Tulips

For the best show, tulips need full sun, which entails at least six hours every day of bright, direct sunlight. They are also great additions to rock gardens since they favor quick-draining soil.

When to Plant Tulips

Fall is the best time to plant tulip bulbs. Prior to planting, the soil must have cooled from the summer growing season, which could occur in September in cold regions (zones 3 to 5), October in transitional temperatures (zones 6 to 7), and November or December in warm areas (zones 8 to 9). Use a soil thermometer to measure the soil’s temperature, and plant when it reaches 60 degrees F at a depth of 6 inches.

For tulips to bloom, they need to be chilled. Buy pre-cooled bulbs and plant them in December if you intend to grow tulips where the soil temperature won’t fall below 60 degrees for at least 12 weeks.

How to Prepare the Soil for Planting Tulips

Use Miracle-Gro Garden Soil for Flowers to prepare the planting space for tulips by incorporating 3 inches of garden soil into the top 6 to 8 inches of native soil. Tulips will develop a strong root system in the fall thanks to the nutrients provided by the soil, which is necessary for a significant spring bloom. However, to get the best results from your tulips, you must combine the strength of excellent soil with just the appropriate plant food. For details on what and when to feed tulips, see “How to Feed Tulips” below.

How to Plant Tulips

Tulips should be planted in bunches of 10 or more for the best display. The pointed end should be facing up as you plant each bulb 8 inches deep (measure from the bottom of the bulb and add the depth of any mulch on top of the soil in your measurement). It is possible to place bulbs close to one another. Thoroughly water.

How to Grow Tulips in a Pot

In pots, tulips are simple to grow. The bulbs should be buried at least 8 inches deep, much like with in-ground plantings, so measure from the top of the container to a depth of about 9 inches, then fill the pot up to that point with Miracle-Gro Potting Mix. Put the pointy end of the bulbs in the pot (you can pack them tightly together). After thoroughly watering, cover with the potting mix. Move the container to a cool, dry spot that stays at or below 40 degrees Fahrenheit during the winter before the first frost in your area. Bring the container outside to a sunny area when you notice tulips budding. Water the soil there. Once you notice green growth, start watering often.

How to Water Tulips

When you plant tulips, make sure to thoroughly water each planting space. After planting, give the plants one watering each week for the first month. Then, leave them alone until spring. When the leaves come out in the spring, start watering once more.

How to Feed Tulips

Apply Miracle-Gro Shake ‘n Feed Rose & Bloom Plant Food in accordance with the instructions on the package once the flowers have faded. In order for the bulb to conserve nutrients for the following growing season, this will aid in promoting leaf growth. Every year in the late fall, feed for the final time (around the same time as you would plant new bulbs).

How to Cut Tulips to Enjoy Indoors

When the buds are still tightly closed, cut tulips. You should be able to identify the hue of the blooms despite the petals’ possible greenish tint. Put inside a spotless vase with room temperature water. Once cut and brought indoors, tulips will continue to “grow” (the stems extend). Simply trim a few inches from the bottom of the stems every few days if they start to get unruly. If you mix Miracle-Gro for Fresh Cut Flowers into the water and replace the water every few days, cut tulips will stay longer (compared to water only).

What to Do After Tulips Bloom

The best tulip flower display will typically occur in gardens in the spring that immediately follows the fall when the bulbs are planted. Once the petals have faded, trim the flower stalk back to the plant’s base to encourage species tulips to return year after year. After the bulbs have gone dormant, cease feeding them as previously mentioned, stop watering them, and trim back the foliage once it has completely turned brown. Simply pluck up the bulbs from hybrid varieties (which are not perennial) and compost them.

How to Protect Tulips from Deer and Other Pests

Preventing deer from eating tulip blooms is the biggest obstacle in tulip gardening, closely followed by preventing chipmunks and squirrels from digging up the bulbs. Planting holes or trenches should have chicken wire surrounding them on all sides to prevent bulbs from being dug up. (If you’re planting large sweeps of bulbs, which is how to get the best show from tulips, this is most useful.)

Deer are another matter. Installing a long (8 feet or more) fence is the greatest approach to keep deer out of the garden, but most people cannot afford to do this. Daffodil and Crown Imperial bulbs are not consumed by deer, so interplanting tulips with these varieties may help deter them. Alternatively, you may try misting a deer repellent on bulb foliage. In light of this, it is preferable to grow tulips in pots on a screened-in porch if deer are a significant issue where you live. This way, the deer can’t access to the flowers.

Ready to start tulip gardening? To learn more about a product, to buy it online, or to locate a retailer near you, click on any of the product links above.