Forum home Problem solving

Weak tulip stems

Hello all, can anybody help?! I planted Tulip clusiana last November into a container, the last couple of weeks they began to appear and looked fantastic when they flowered but this was short lived. They rapidly declined, the flower stems began to lose all stability and quickly arched over and eventually turned soft and mushy at the bend. I can’t think of any reason for this, I have never grown this tulip before but all my other tulips are great. Any ideas? 



  • GardenerSuzeGardenerSuze Posts: 5,040
    @adamscott91 Welcome to the forum. Not sure but could it be the unusually warm temperatures. This tulip can cope with some shade. 
    Building a garden is very personal. It's not quite the same as installing a boiler.
    James Alexander Sinclair 
  • PlantmindedPlantminded Posts: 2,768
    They need lots of water in pots, especially if they're in a sunny or windy position.
    Wirral. Sandy, free draining soil.

  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Posts: 86,103
    edited April 2022
    We have T. clusiana 'Peppermint Stick' ... they've been in the same container for a couple of years now ... they don't seem have quite such tall flower stems as yours.  They're well past their best now, but I'll post a photo and see what you think about the stem length ...


    Gardening in Central Norfolk on improved gritty moraine over chalk ... free-draining.

  • FireFire Posts: 17,352
    I've had this problem with the smaller tulips this year. Very well watered and they are happily flowering, but stems are lying on the ground.
  • GardenerSuzeGardenerSuze Posts: 5,040
    @Fire Do you think this could be something to do with the fact they are species tulips?
    Building a garden is very personal. It's not quite the same as installing a boiler.
    James Alexander Sinclair 
  • FireFire Posts: 17,352
    They are not species - they are Tinka, Peppermint Stick and a few others, planted out in beds last year.
  • punkdocpunkdoc Posts: 14,362
    No, I have several Species Tulips and they stand up fine. Sorry I have no idea what the cause is, although I have seen similar after frost.
    How can you lie there and think of England
    When you don't even know who's in the team

    S.Yorkshire/Derbyshire border
  • FireFire Posts: 17,352
    Yes, it might have been a combination of frost and then hot sun or some such. Hellebores can get that, but they seem to recover ok from the limpness. We haven't had temps much below zero all winter.
  • FairygirlFairygirl Posts: 53,966
    I grow that one and they're no problem, but I have other planting around them for support. I don't find frosts affect them, but they might be a bit dry. Any tulip, even the species ones, can struggle a bit in a pot, if that's the case.   :)
    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....

    I live in west central Scotland - not where that photo is...
  • Thanks everyone. We haven’t had many nights below zero since they have flowered and I would assume with under watering that you would see slight drooping first, not an immediate decline, so I am puzzled. They will be planted into the ground once they die back so hopefully things change next year. 
Sign In or Register to comment.