Sayonara Tulips

Despite their lack of abundance in my garden, tulips are one of my favourite plants. A few years ago this leant itself to a bit of a photographic obsession …

This year I was very pleasantly surprised by the tulips I did have. In a wooden planter I had a number of ‘Alibi’ – and there’s also the distinct possibility of another variety planted with them that I can’t quite remember the name of …

Apart from one rogue red one …

… the others (down in the ‘bottom’ area – between the cypress tree and the house) were a mix of white and black. Not so many photos of these, I’m afraid …

However, all their glorious velvety delicacy was somewhat … destroyed by the wind and rain we had last week (or was it the week before?!) so over the weekend I finally gave in and dug up the bulbs.

Leaving the ‘green’ attached, they have been placed (gently and securely) in their summer receptacles (i.e. some old plant pots) and housed in their dry, cool, frost-free accommodation (i.e. the back of the shed) until the green has died and they can be cleaned – and then replanted in the autumn.

Its always a bit of a shame when you reach the end of a season, or the first flushes of Spring give way to the “is it Summer yet or just late Spring?” conundrum. But such is life.

And today … today I managed to buy some of my other favourite plants – cosmos! Cosmos bipinnatus is the common garden variety (of which I now have 6 Sonata White and 6 Sonata Carmine), but … I was given a couple of the sulphur cosmos – Cosmos sulphureus – and a couple of, er, others in my recent plant bundle. The four ‘gifts’ have been planted and the 12 others I’m going to attempt to grow in pots … which may be a bit of a mistake – but its worth an attempt at least, right?!

So what’s happening with the ‘trough’ the pink tulips came out of? The 6 zinnias (no idea about colour) and two of the Cosmos were planted in there.

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The other two were planted in the courgette bed (along with the three sunflowers, one of the Asphodeline lutea plants, one of the blackcurrants and two transplanted evening primroses) before I built my pyramids of poo and added the 3 courgettes: Mystery Squash, a ‘yellow long’ and an ‘Italian long’ (striped, I think, but there’s a possibility it might be a round one …). As squashes are such heavy feeders, it pays to give them as much as possible from the get-go! I’ll supplement this as the season progresses, and will also mulch to retain heat and moisture.

2014-05-20 11.55.46And the hole that was left where the white and black tulips came from? As the Astilbe seems to have come back incredibly strongly, and the hardy Fuschia is also coming along merrily, I didn’t want to have anything too tall in there (last year it had the Cosmos ‘Razzmatazz’) that would shade them out. Consequently today I also bought 6 little Sweet Williams (Dianthus barbatus) ‘Wee Willie Mix’ to fill the gap which currently looks like this …

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(Rosa rugosa climbing the fence, primroses and hyacinths to the left and front, geraniums to the right. Astilbe to the right and the hardy Fuschia to the left of the rose.)

So sorting out the Sweet Williams is my job tomorrow morning – that and catching up on some watering as it hasn’t rained nearly as much as they’d originally forecast.

 

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4 thoughts on “Sayonara Tulips”

  1. Tulips are wonderful aren’t they. After reading blogs this year I am going to try some of the smaller species tulips next autumn. I also have quit e a few tulips that have got separated from their groups. I hope I can remember which is which when I try to reunite them.

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    1. They are! I’m not a huge fan of the extreme ‘frills’ or parrot-types – I prefer the ‘classic’ shape – but some of them are amazing. They make such a difference, I think, in the spring. Its a shame that they don’t hang around for longer. I think I may join you in getting some of the shorter ones for next year!

      I have more trouble with forgetting which group is which colour …!

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  2. Cosmos are fine in pots as long as they don’t completely dry out. I feed mine with tomato food to keep them flowering. They’re good in a single pot (12″ or bigger) or are happy in a mixed container display. Also, very easy to grow from seed on a kitchen window sill (I don’t have a greenhouse). Tulips and cosmos – agree with you, spring and summer, both beautiful and great doers!

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    1. Thanks @agnesashe! Good to know! 😀

      I use tomato food as a general fertiliser anyway for whatever I have in pots – or whatever else needs a little … perking up!

      No, I don’t have a greenhouse either. I wish I did – and possibly a cold frame. But, luckily, the plant donations from my mum keep me going! 😉

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