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Perennial Tulips (thinking ahead...)

Janie BJanie B Posts: 865
I've realised that although my garden has a profusion of colour during the summer months, I'm lacking spring colour... Could anyone recommend any reliable perennial tulips (not necessarily species ones) for my borders? Many thanks.


  • Papi JoPapi Jo Posts: 3,740
    Hi @Janie B Not sure what you mean by "perennial tulips", especially since you specify "not necessarily species ones", which are precisely those tulips which are more perennial than other ones. ;) I'm confused.
    You are invited to a virtual visit of my garden (in English or in French).
  • K67K67 Posts: 2,507
    edited April 2020
    In the past I have had fosteraina  tulips and these flowered every year. 
    I have planted mixed colours in my new garden and they have just finished flowering so hope they might return next year.

  • edhelkaedhelka Posts: 2,278
    Peternyssen has a category for tulips with high probability of coming back every year.

  • Janie BJanie B Posts: 865
    Sorry, @Papi Jo , I didn't mean to confuse you! From what I read the species tulips tend to be shorter and have smaller flower heads than most tulips. I prefer the taller, more majestic-looking ones. I understand that some of these taller varieties are more reliable at returning year after year. These are the ones I'm after. 

    Thanks for your suggestions, @K67 and @edhelka, I'll take a look. 
  • B3B3 Posts: 24,463
    I had a cream coloured (not a yellow cream) tulip with longish stems that flowered for many years. I can't remember what it was called though.
    In London. Keen but lazy.
  • Janie BJanie B Posts: 865
    Hmmm, @B3 ... Could it be "purissima"? That is one of the fosteriana ones that @K67 mentions above.

  • B3B3 Posts: 24,463
    I've absolutely no idea. I saw one on Google called vanilla which looked similar
    In London. Keen but lazy.
  • Butterfly66Butterfly66 Posts: 784
    @Papi Jo is right, it’s the species tulips that tend to be reliably “perennial”. Cultivars tend to be less reliable and unfortunately this includes the taller, more majestic ones you refer too but some are more reliable than others.

    in my experience the following have flowered well for more than one year - the years below are the longest I have tried or had them for

    Queen of the Night - in our garden when we moved in and garden neglected for several years beforehand so has flowered each year for minimum of 6 years

    Last year I grew Red Parade and Van Eijk in tubs - all have flowered again well for a second year again in containers.

    Purissima - grown last year in a tub and this year in the garden, all flowered again.

    I also remember that my college had Spring Green, Shirley and Negrita tulips in their flower beds and being told they came back year in year without being replanted.

     If you have a garden and a library, you have everything you need.”—Marcus Tullius Cicero
    East facing, top of a hill clay-loam, cultivated for centuries (7 years by me). Birmingham
  • ObelixxObelixx Posts: 28,827
    Tulips are perennials.  What makes the difference to their being likely to flower year on year is the depth at which they are planted and the soil.   If you can plant them 9"/23cms deep they are more likely to return and they also need full sun and good drainage. 

    The RHS has this list of species and other tulips most mlikeley to flower again -  
    Vendée - 20kms from Atlantic coast.
    "We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing." - George Bernard Shaw
  • punkdocpunkdoc Posts: 13,244
    I have some Ballerina which have been returning for at least 5 years.
    There are ashtrays of emulsion,
    for the fag ends of the aristocracy.

    S.Yorkshire/Derbyshire border
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