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Species Tulip Bulbs being dug up.

Last year I planted lots of Species Tulip bulbs, and had a lovely show from them. I left them in the ground and was looking forwards to them coming back again this year.
while my daffodils and crocus' are emerging nicely, I was wondering why my Tulips hadn't made an appearance yet, when on closer inspection I noticed that most of these bulbs have been dug up by something. 
I have no idea what has done this, though the neighbours cats are prime suspects, and I am hopeful that the ones that I have rescued will still grow and flower.
any ideas why this may be happening or what I can do to prevent/minimise it happening?


  • FireFire North LondonPosts: 17,116
    It's often squirrels. Chicken wire just under the earth can help, if over a small area, or in a pot.
  • Thanks, any idea why just the species tulips bulbs though? they seem to have left the other bulbs alone.
  • pansyfacepansyface PEAK DISTRICT DerbyshirePosts: 20,951
    Just dug up and scattered or dug up and gone?

    If dug up and disappeared - badgers?

    Our badgers love tulips. Though they are not as picky as yours.

    Apophthegm -  a big word for a small thought.
  • FairygirlFairygirl west central ScotlandPosts: 47,960
    Squirrels tend to take smaller bulbs because they're planted less deeply. They don't normally dig down far enough to reach bigger bulbs. 
    Most of the species tulips are smaller sized bulbs, and smaller plants altogether.

    If they've gone completely, I'd agree with @Fire and say it's probably those little blighters. It's the little sphaerocephalon alliums they mostly pinch here. They've not managed my little tulips - so far  ;)
    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....

  • FireFire North LondonPosts: 17,116
    Something has chomped off all my Tete-a-Tete and snowdrop heads. :s
  • Not sure badgers can get into my garden. I’ve got pretty solid fences all the way round. Lots of trees and close to a river so squirrels or rats maybe??
    seems to be a mixture of scattered and gone, so I’m really confused.
  • yorkshireroseyorkshirerose North YorkshirePosts: 574
    I agree with squirrels taking your species tulips. I've lost most of mine too. I think our local squirrel bandits (we have 3 come in a gang quite regularly) dig them up mistaking them for hazelnuts they pinch from my tree and bury all over the garden
    A gardener's work is never at an end  - (John Evelyn 1620-1706)
  • I’m really disappointed, they were so nice last year and cost a fair bit, but I though it would be worth it as they can naturalise one the border and flower every year! 😩
  • raisingirlraisingirl East Devon, on the Edge of Exmoor.Posts: 6,199
    A rat ate mine. It also ate all the big tulip bulbs. I know it was a rat because I saw it doing it. Doesn't like daffs though so I stick with them in the beds and grow a few tulips in pots with chicken wire hats.
    “Light thinks it travels faster than anything but it is wrong. No matter how fast light travels, it finds the darkness has always got there first” 
  • BobTheGardenerBobTheGardener Leicestershire, UKPosts: 11,391
    edited February 2020
    Recorded in my garden late January.  Wasn't even after the bulbs..

    A trowel in the hand is worth a thousand lost under a bush.
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