Tulips are beautiful flowers that are popular among florists and home gardeners alike. Native to parts of Holland, these flowers are available in a spectacular range of shades. Blooming during spring, they are also a popular option for a wedding. Traditionally, Tulips are known to grow from seeds or small bulbs. But do these seeds spread? In case they do, how does the process look like? Let’s clear the air!
Do Tulips Spread?
Yes! The seeds of tulips are naturally spread (asexual reproduction) with little human intervention. After spreading, they evolve as bulbs and eventually go on to become a part of the flower. It is worth noting here that tulips are just like everything else in nature.
As with every other flower, there are tulips spread to exist. Although they don’t spread as quickly as you would expect, after planting a couple of plants you’d soon notice them expanding in numbers.
However, as previously mentioned, this does require some effort from your end too. Over the next few sections, we will discuss this in detail after touching up with the basics.
How Do Tulips Spread?
Most of us have probably seen tulips as small bulbs. That is why many find it hard to fathom how and when tulips spread. It is worth noting here that tulips are indeed available as seeds and you can actually grow a plant from these tiny seeds.
However, this is still a far uncommon method as the growth requires a longer time and the process is significantly complex. Tulip seeds are covered by a leathery layer known as the ellipsoid capsol which derives its name from the globular shape. However, regardless of the form (seed or bulbs) tulips gradually spread through proper planting along with a tad bit of help from nature.
At this point, you are probably wondering how exactly the multiplication of tulips take place. Well, as previously discussed, every living being finds a natural recourse to exist and thrive on the earth. Tulips are no exception.
They choose to thrive naturally by continuing to be hermaphroditic by nature. But what exactly does this term mean? Well, in the simplest term, tulips come with both male and female traits. They can naturally reproduce (asexually) and do not need to depend on anyone else to assist with the process. The process is not the fastest and is highly scientific.
If you have planted tulips at home, you can expect the first blooms in the late summer and autumn months. Right after the bloom, the plant will be surrounded by tinier bulbs that rise from the primary root of the plant.
You can expect 2 to 6 small bulbs like these. You can help tulips reproduce by taking the smaller bulbs out and almost instantly planting them slightly apart. This will expedite the reproduction process of your beloved plant. So, we can conclude that the bulbs of tulips spread by creating smaller bulbs from the primary one.
Spreading From Seeds
In some instances, you might find the tulips spreading from their seeds instead of the bulb. This usually happens when the plant is heavily reliant on nature and its workings. The process is exactly similar to several other plants and just like them, tulips naturally depend on animals, rainfall, and the heavy gush of wind for spreading the seeds.
Planting Tulips For Quicker Spread
While tulips can spread naturally without any human intervention, we would not recommend this process until you are comfortable waiting for many years until you witness the first signs of growth. With a little help, you can expedite the spreading process and all you practically need to do is follow the right guidelines.
First, you need to get some good tulip buds and plant them correctly. By correctly, we are suggesting you plant the bulbs at least 7 to 8 inches deep in good, well-fertilized soil. Next, when you’re done planting, water the bulb just like any other flower. Finally, make sure the patch of tulip plants receives ample sunlight as it plays a vital role in their growth. This is all you need to do for the very first year.
Interestingly, you also need not worry about the spreading part in case you’re planning to treat the plant as an annual. Several gardening enthusiasts encounter considerable difficulty after getting to grow their plant after one year. At that stage, you can also dig the bulbs and replace them with newer variants if you are not quite confident about the growth.
However, this is only applicable when you treat the plant like an annual. In case you are treating it like a perennial since it naturally is one, you can always go the extra mile by trimming off the tops once the flowers die. Finally, by August you can gradually do some digging, get the roots out, and separate the bulbs. You should replant them in the next few minutes, else they end up dying. You can consider this method every alternate year or once in three years for the most favorable results.
Do Tulips Come Back Every Year?
Well, by nature, tulips have the reputation of being plants that should come back annually. This usually happens because they are perennials. However, despite their instincts, tulips often end up being slightly moody when you are trying to get them back after year one.
In these situations, you can follow the below guidelines for the best results.
1. Always Read the Instructions: Almost all well-bred tulips come with a set of instruction labels that state their current stage. In the majority of the situations, you will find them at a naturalizing stage which means that the plants have been carefully created by experts who have ensured that the buds will thrive well and healthy.
2. Avoid Removing Them: In some situations, it is recommended you replant the tulip bulbs after the first year. However, if this doesn’t work, just leave them be and wait a little longer to see if it grows. There may be a chance for their growth.
3. Avoid Trimming the Leaves: Once your beautiful tulip blooms start drooping, consider trimming their heads. However, as you do this, avoid trimming any leaves as it might hinder the natural photosynthesis process of your plant.
4. Get Rid of the Bad Ones: If you specifically find a few tulip bulbs that do not seem to be growing well, you might want to get rid of the bad bulbs and replace them with fresh new ones.
What Do You Do With Tulips After They Bloom?
After you’ve witnessed a full garden bloom of the tulips, the flowers will start withering. At this stage, we recommend deadheading the plant to hinder the process of creating more seeds. For the uninitiated, new seeds take in excess energy from the plant eventually hindering its growth and blooms.
As you continue deadheading the tulips, make sure you accidentally do not remove any leaves unless they are dried up and yellow. Since leaves contribute to photosynthesis you end up inadvertently robbing the plant of energy by snipping the foliage out. If you are still insistent on completely getting rid of the foliage, we recommend waiting for the leaves to dry out, turn yellow, and completely die. Avoid trimming green or even light yellowish foliage.
How Long Does it Take For Tulips to Multiply?
In their native habitats, tulips multiple once every 2 to 3 months. However, there are other species that only multiply once a year. Depending on the species you’re planting at home, it can take anywhere from one to six months for the tulips to multiply.
Do Tulips Bloom More Than Once?
While Tulips should traditionally grow every year, they tend to be slightly fussy in this department. For best results, we recommend replanting the buds, getting rid of the old buds, and trimming the tops of the dead flowers.
What Months do Tulips Bloom?
Tulips are categorized into 15 small groups and you will find a range of species in every group. Blooms vary in color according to their groups. While some of them are red and yellow, others may feature pinkish, violent, pale salmon, and even greenish hues.
Some categories of tulips )the most common ones) are known to bloom during the spring months between Late March to June, while others start blooming from Mid spring (May and June) and even Late Spring (July and August). We recommend planting tulips from every group for a range of colors and a blooming garden throughout the year.
Well, that was all about tulips and how they gradually spread. So, in case you have tulips at home, you now know what to expect during the blooming season. For better and more lustrous blooms, we recommend leaving a space of around four to six inches along with the different bulbs of the flower.
This way, as the bulbs assume root and finally evolve with tiny bulbs, they would have complete access to all the nutrients. While planting the bulbs you should also bury them eight to 12 inches deep for their proper and consistent growth. Once you follow these simple guidelines, you will soon end up with beautifully home-grown tulips like you always wanted!