How to grow tulips
Spring-flowering bulbs like to be planted in autumn in cool soil. If you have frosts in April, plant towards the end of March. In frost-free areas, delay planting until late April or May.
Most flowering bulbs need plenty of sun to do well, but this doesn’t mean baking! Under deciduous trees suits them well, or anywhere receiving at least four hours of direct sun a day.
They prefer average garden soil, which drains freely. If the soil is too sandy and dry, mix compost or rotted cow manure through it a few weeks before planting. If it’s heavy and clay-like, build up a raised bed or grow bulbs in pots.
Keep the soil lightly moist. If you get regular rain in autumn and winter, you may not need to water at all!
After bloom snap off developing seedpods, but leave the flower stem, as the bulb needs the nutrients in the stem. Let the leaves yellow before cutting them away.
After planting, sprinkle a ration of controlled-release fertiliser over the soil and cover lightly with more soil. As soon as flowering finishes, water the leaves of the plants with a soluble fertiliser.
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