Tulip care during the growing season is a concern of many tulip gardeners. After all, you've invested money and time in planting new bulbs in the fall. You've fertilized and watered the garden after planting.
Now, spring is unfolding and you want to make sure that you get to see the flowers you worked so hard to cultivate. You should take to properly care for your tulips, before, during, and after the growing season. Read this article to know how to take care of tulips in your garden.
Tulip flowers are a hardy species, but if you don't know how to deal with the main challenges, your garden will suffer. Here are the top concerns and issues with tulips before flowering.
Fertilize your tulip plants twice a year. The best time to feed tulips is in the early spring (before they bloom again). The best way to feed them is to add a tablespoon of a granular fertilizer on the soil around each bulb. This should be done before flowering because feeding your tulips after flowering could cause a disease.
Tulips need lots of water. If your garden gets plenty of rainfall nature will take care of the watering. If you live in a very warm area all-year-round, make sure to water your tulip garden at least once a week.
Watch out for animal pests. Rabbits eat more than lettuce, they love to gnaw on tulip plants. Since tulip shoots break through the soil before grass and other vegetation grow, rabbits can be trouble. You can prevent rabbits from eating your tulip plants by using a physical fence, chicken wire, cayenne pepper, or non-toxic commercial products like Liquid Fence.
Like rabbits, squirrels can harm the tulip plant. However, squirrels dig out and eat the tulip bulb. One of the best ways to protect the bulbs is to install netting over the bulbs when planting them. That practice will deter squirrels from reaching the bulbs. Once the bulbs have been planted, you can sprinkle blood meal on top of the soil that seems to repel squirrels.
Voles are another problem. Voles are small rodents that burrow and dig tunnels underground. Voles see tulip bulbs as food and will eat the bulbs, destroying your tulip garden. Unfortunately, there are not very many effective ways to remove voles.
Grubs are insects that are the biggest killer of tulip. If the dirt in your garden has grubs, use some time released insect/or grub killer on the ground around them once or twice a year. Nurseries and home garden centers offer various grub insecticides in granular form that control these pesky insects.
Here's an additional tip:
The blooming season for tulips is between two to three weeks long. You can plant other flowers in the same garden as the tulips so that the new flowers will fill in when the tulips die.
When days become longer and warmer, you will have more time to enjoy your garden. By making time for tulip care in the spring as your priority, your tulips will grow tall, strong and beautiful -- perfect for bouquets in your house.
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