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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 Posts: 18,993
    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.
  • FairygirlFairygirl Posts: 54,882
    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....

    I live in west central Scotland - not where that photo is...
  • FireFire Posts: 18,993
    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.
  • 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 Posts: 7,083
    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.
    Gardening on the edge of Exmoor, in Devon

    “It's still magic even if you know how it's done.” 
  • BobTheGardenerBobTheGardener Posts: 11,384
    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.
  • We’re quite close to a river, so rats are a possibility, I hope not though as I prefer the thought of something a bit cuter in the garden. 😂
    I love Daffodils, but the tulips were something a bit hardier that added a different colour. Might have to do a bit of investigation to see if I can catch the culprit! 
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