planting tulips amongst other flowers

RoseAbbeySeptember 6, 2009

I would like to plant some tulips since most of my flower beds contain a lot of hydrangeas that dont bloom until July. Can I plant tulip bulbs amongst my hydrangea? I think I read somewhere that tulips once finished flowering dont like to be watered but hydrangea do. I have seen tulips in other peoples gardens that contain a variety of flowers. So how does one satisfy the need of both types of flowers? I live in zone 5b.

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calistoga_al ca 15 usda 9

I grow tulips under my roses. The roses are pruned back and almost invisible when the tulips are in bloom. Tulips do best in full sun and hydrangeas prefer a limited sun exposure. The roses leaf out and put on their growth as the tulips are declining. In my zone the tulips need to be dug out and are usually treated as annuals. When the tulips are removed I top dress the area with compost. Al

    Bookmark   September 7, 2009 at 9:32AM
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zubababy(6b Utah)

I had tulips in a bed with other plants at my old house.
The tulips had no problem coming up the next year in areas that only got weekly watering (1-2 hours of water).
The tulips that were planted in an area that I watered every day or two (with a hose for about 10 min) did not come back up.
I live in a very dry summer area, and the tulips do very well here. I don't see that the tulips have a problem getting wet in summer... as long as they are able to dry out, before getting wet again..... just my thoughts

    Bookmark   September 7, 2009 at 1:46PM
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vetivert8(NI-NZ zone 9a)

I'm starting to find that my tulips last better if left in the ground/pot. Like zubababy, I notice that some water has no bad effect. If I leave them in a big pot there is usually some residual moisture and that prevents the bulbs from drying out, going corky, getting fungus. Same in the garden, even in a dry summer. They pull themselves down into the cool zone they need. If you have a soil you've worked deeply they'll have no problem doing this 'pulling down' trick.

My soil is silty clay in zone 9a. A friend gardens on very heavy but amended clay in zone 8b and we can both 'keep' our tulips. Because we are rural and don't have unlimited water we're really mean with what we spend our precious supply on. Less is better for tulips over summer - but that doesn't mean zero.

If you have a formal garden with bedding displays over the summer that have to be watered routinely to be effective - I wouldn't try to keep tulips in the same bed. Use them as annuals. Dig them up and put them in a holding bed. But not keep them in a water-heavy soil.

    Bookmark   September 8, 2009 at 6:01PM
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singleton165(z5 NH Seacoast)

The original poster is in zone 5B, so depending on what type of hydrangea they have they may be able to take quite a bit of sun. Being in New England myself there are a lot of plants/shrubs that can take much more of our weaker sunlight.

    Bookmark   September 9, 2009 at 10:06PM
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calistoga_al ca 15 usda 9

I could leave my tulips in the garden with no problem with the summer heat or the summer water. The problem is the winter chilling is not enough for the tulips to bloom the next year. If I have to dig them to chill for next year, I might as well chill new bulbs that I am sure will do well. The cost of tulips is very reasonable if purchased in quantity. Al

    Bookmark   September 10, 2009 at 8:46AM
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How do tulips (and other bulbs) pull themselves down? I moved some tulips last year and was surprised at how deep they were. I was still cutting bulbs in half a foot down. :(

    Bookmark   September 11, 2009 at 11:32AM
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