In a Vase on Monday – Tulip Time!

It would be easy to say it was all Cathy (Rambling in the Garden)’s fault that I’ve become passionate about growing and forcing tulips into early flower to cut for a vase; but it wouldn’t be true.  I’ve loved tulips for a long while now and learning how to force them into flower by chilling the bulbs before planting is just a natural progression.

If the greenhouse were warmer they would flower much more quickly after they’ve been chilled and planted.  Some I may experiment with next year – there’s always a “next year” in gardening, don’t you find?

Let me show you how Tulip Daydream that looked a very elegant yellow when I picked it last Tuesday but that I thought might have been miss-labelled has opened fully now and is showing the apricot/orange colour that was shown on the pack and in the description.

Tulip ‘Daydream’

T. Daydream

It has also grown hugely – the flower is now a full 15 cm in diameter (that’s very nearly 6 inches).  I wasn’t expecting that!

T. Daydream

For my vase today I was able to pick more of Tulip Van Eijk.  There are more yet to flower but with the addition of some Senecio (old name, I know) they have made a very pleasing vase.

In a vase on Monday Tulip Van Eijk

Tulip Van Eijk

I often prefer tulips on their own but I’m happy that the Sececio allowed the tulip stems to have their own space in the vase.

Do visit Cathy to see what treasures everyone else has found today.

42 thoughts on “In a Vase on Monday – Tulip Time!

  1. The senecio works well on several levels, particularly as its grey perfectly balances with the coral pink of Tulip Van Eijk. You have done very well to get tulips in January.

    • I chill my tulips in the fridge for at least twelve weeks and then plant into pots in the frost-free greenhouse Noelle. I would love to be able to have some for Christmas but I think I’d have to give them quite a lot of heat when they are potted up. I might try bringing one pot into the house next year.

  2. Amazing how Tulip Daydream develops and how pretty it is. Your combination of Senecio with Tulip Van Eijk is perfectly stunning. One of the first things I remember from reading your blog in the early days of knowing you is we share a love of silvery foliage. It really shows off the tulips nicely.

    • Thank you Susie; I’m lucky that it is the silvery leafed plants that do well in my garden. I’ve taken more cuttings from the Senecio to plant on the slope so I’ll hopefully always have some to pick for vases. I was pleased that with the foliage I could use the round ‘gold fish’ bowl vase, without the stems the tulips would just have drooped.

  3. That combination with the Senecio was inspired Christina – really love the silvery foliage with tulips. It is amazing that tulips continue to grow once cut. Lovely photos.

    • The fact that the stems of tulips continue to grow after being cut never ceases to amaze me, Cathy! But these are even more incredible the actual flower must have almost doubled in size.

  4. You were right to add the silver foliage of senecio to Van Eijk – the vase looks wonderful against the white background. And nearly 6″ across for Daydream! Those splayed petals make a great picture, Christina, and your enthusiasm for tulips shines throught his post and will no doubt be infectious

    • Daydream is new to me and one I might not have chosen from a catalogue, but was ‘just’ available in the local DIY store where I bought all my tulips this year. sometimes its good to be forced to try something different.

    • thanks Peter; yes, it is a real joy to have tulips now. I didn’t plant as many this year so I’m not sure the forced ones will see me through to those flowering in the garden.

  5. What a treat Christina to see your tulips….that yellow one is beautiful inside its petals. And I love the salmon pink of Tulip Van Eijk. I can see why you love to force tulips!


    • Tulip Daydream has been such a surprise. The colour is really beautiful and the form when its open (which I don’t usually like as much as when they are closed) is stunning. I’m so glad you enjoyed seeing them Donna.

  6. The tulips are melt-my-heart beautiful, Christina! I’m off to a garden center with a friend today and plan to scout around to see if I can find any of the pre-sprouted tulips they’ve sold in the past, although the Santa Ana winds are blowing here (again) so weather conditions aren’t hospitable for tulips at the moment.

    • I hope you’re lucky and find some tulips Kris. I’m so happy with the way these look in a vase. If you find some chilled stock, could you protect them from the wind in your lathe house?

  7. Christina as the Tulip Daydream has evolved: in yellow and now that it is fully open and very large in apricot-orange. It is spectacular! I had never seen a beautiful open tulip. Your vase with Tulip Van Eijk and Senecio is magnificent. Confront the coral pink with the gray is wonderful. And the tulips in the vase keep growing: it seems incredible to me. The Tulip Van Eijk I love, like all tulips: it is one of my favorite bulbs along with the irises. Greetings from Margarita.

      • Yes, it’s lucky Christina. At the end of October of last year, before leaving the country house, I planted white and purple irides with yellow. But it was so hot in the month of October, we were at 20º or 23º Celsius for the day and at night at 8ºC, that the first irises that I planted the last week before leaving, started to come out. I covered him with more dirt to try to stop them. The normal thing there is to be at 12 or 15º C during the day and at night at 2ºc, alternating with cold weeks of 8ºc and rain. I have never had to water the bulbs that I have planted and I have always removed the drip irrigation and this month of October I had to water. Climate change is being noticed. Sorry for telling my problems with the garden. Greetings from Margarita.

  8. And so the wonderful spring season begins… I chilled some tulips but they are way behind yours. How wonderful to see them here, the pink and grey is lovely. I’m always thinking about next year and currently adding winter flowering things to my wish list!

    • When did you start chilling the bulbs. I manages to buy mine early and they were put in the fridge on the 4th September. If the weather had been a bit warmer after I planted then I’m sure they would have flowered sooner still.

  9. Love the grey/pink combination, the tulips, and the next year sentiment/rallying cry? Trying to decide on a good word for that. Hope springs eternal for a magical garden,for all of us,I think and your tulips are magic. Wonderful.

  10. That combination of silver and red is lovely. Not much flowering here except frosted pussy willows- admittedly nice- but I have to go out and buy tulips – red ones this week. There is very little as beautiful.

    • It really is worth chilling a couple of packs to have early. Though you can buy lovely ones at not too high a price, so maybe not as worth it as for me. Watched Monte yesterday on YouTube in Persia- I want to go!!!!!

        • I forgot to check the moon last night, silly of me; it was clear so I’m sure it would have been amazing. I’ll look tonight. I agree about the Paradise gardens. The one in Marrakesh was in Garden’s Illustrated last month too. Inspirational.

  11. The senecio with the pink is absolutely perfect.
    You’d laugh to see my forced tulips. A mouse nibbled all the growing tips and I believe they will not put on as nice a show as yours. Last year I had planned on copying your method of refrigeration and then planting, but this year I of course forgot. I bet they would have been safer in the fridge.

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