Tulips are the stars of the spring garden. From late March until May they provide colour and height in beds, borders and containers. Tulips grow best in fertile, well drained soil in a sunny sheltered position.
There are lots of tulip varieties to grow, but some of the most elegant and shapely are the Lily flowered tulips whose petals are long and point outwards. Many are quite tall at 50 cm, so may need a sheltered site. Most of these tulips flower at the end of the season in late April and May.
I grow more lily flowered tulips than any other types. They have a good chance of coming back again, and are so elegant and attractive, plus some, like Ballerina, are scented.
My favourite lily flowered tulips are:
- China Pink AGM: Elegant deep-pink goblet-shaped blooms have white bases inside, with swept-back pointed tips. Height 50cm. Plant with Angelique, a double flowered tulip or with ‘Maytime’.
- West Point AGM is golden yellow, very bright and cheerful. H 50-60cms flowers late April/May. It contrasts with crimson tulips or with White Triumphator or Viridiflora ‘Spring Green’.
- Ballerina is a beautiful orange, with darker orange edges and it is also sweetly scented. H 60cms. It is striking in the border and goes well with purple.
- White Triumphator AGM has graceful long-stemmed flowers of pure white. H 60cm . It looks lovely in containers and mixes with many other tulips.
- Maytime has purple violet flowers. H 50cms. It is quite sturdy and robust.
AGM = Outstanding Garden Merit award given by the Royal Horticultural Society
The photo shows the tulips growing in the hot sunny border by the house.