A Tulip is a Terrible Thing to Waste
So I brought my Tulip pots from the garage today. Everything is frozen solid, true, but still: it’s March. I don’t mind telling you, though, I’m worried about this year’s Tulips.
This past winter I stored all the Tulip pots in the garage with no extra insulation. This is something I’ve done before with decent results. So I’ve gotten a little cavalier about protection from winter temperatures. Excess moisture has been a much bigger problem.
But then came January, 2019, and nearly a week where temperatures plummeted to -22F. It’s been decades since there’s been weather that cold here.
I knew I could have a problem when I went to the garage to get this sack of free double Daffodil bulbs that I had received as part of a promotion. The plan was to force them inside, and I had kept them in the fridge to chill until Judy demanded I move them to our unheated garage (something about needing space for a Thanksgiving turkey). I plunked them on a shelf with absolutely no protection, which was kind of careless of me.
So when I brought them inside I discovered they were all a little soft. Not completely squishy, but not as firm as they should be. If a bulb isn’t firm it’s likely diseased or the cold has caused cells to burst. Most Tulips and Daffodils are hardy to zone 3. Like most cold-hardy plants, their cells have a natural antifreeze – but there’s a limit to how much cold they can tolerate.
Anyhow, I picked the 20 Daffodil bulbs that seemed the least damaged and planted them in pots set out on the back porch. So far, there is no sign of them, which does not bode well.
So I guess I’ll just have to wait and see. It may be a month before I know if the Tulip pots are going to be a disappointment this year.
I for one am hoping every one of your bulbs blooms so I can enjoy the lovely shots. But, that is some cold temperature they had to deal with. Fingers crossed.
Yeah, guess that’s all we can do now.
I do hope your tulips prevail. -22F sounds like Arctic weather. At least an unheated garage would have been a few degrees warmer. Fingers x’d.
It felt pretty darned arctic.
Waiting’s hard. That’s going to be a long month. I’d be looking at those pots every day, just hoping. Fingers crossed that they had adequate antifreeze.
It will be a long month, and most days I will be out of town.
Oh, I hope you don’t lose them! They are some of the prettiest tulips I’ve seen. And that’s saying a lot, I am not one for tulips, I don’t know why not.
I’m also hoping they are still alive. Time will tell.
Well… I’m hoping you will have enough tulips, one way and another, to cheer me up through our dreary winter. Good luck!
I’ll keep my fingers crossed for you, it would be terrible not to have tulips!!!!!
I would be heartbroken!
I bet your tulips survive. Goodness your area has had some severe weather this winter. Let us hope this spring and summer will be better for our garden. I think all the rain we got this winter drowned the crocus in the lawn. They aren’t showing even the green yet.
I hope you’re right!
Your display is simply stunning so I hope you succeed this year. Definitely tired of this continuing winter weather.
I guess if for nothing else this will help you find your limits? Hopefully they’ll be as excellent as usual this May, and you’ll never need to worry about garage temperatures again. Isn’t it kind of early to put them out though? I used to keep mine in the garage until they at least thawed out and started to sprout a bit, just to save them from some of that freeze-thaw torture.
Yeah, it is kind of early; I was too impatient. I hope I didn’t put the final nail in their coffin.
Fingers crossed! What a cold winter it has been, in Maine, too. Last year’s display was absolutely lovely, and I hope this year is the same.
My goodness that’s cold, I can’t quite imagine it. I hope your tulips survive. I have lost several pots to squirrels who have developed a taste for them.
Squirrels haven’t been as much of a problem, partly because the pots freeze solid.
You were very remiss not to pot up your daffs on receipt – of all the bulbs they want to make early roots – over here even in September, although of course you can plant them very much later than that
Perhaps the temperatures in your garage were well below -22 – oh I have just realised you work in fahrenheit- is that fifty-four degrees of frost in old money? Wow
I was about to put my money on your tulips but now I am not so sure
Best of luck
Thanks. Yes, Fahrenheit – that’s -30 degrees Celsius.
I meant above 22!
I hope you get the tulips you want–darned cold!
Still waiting to find out .
Oh my! I was just wondering the same about daffodil bulbs I planted late. Someone gave them to us, but they waited out in the shop for a while. It did not seem like too long, but they were a bit ‘light’ when I put them in the ground. I was hopping for immediate growth. Even though it is probably still too early for them (since the were planted late) I want to see some green.
Time will tell.
I hope they’re okay. I’d love to see those suncathers again.
Yes, me too!
It has been so bitterly cold here in southesst Michigan that I am worried about a lot of my flowers and shrubs. Good luck with your tulips.
Thanks. Same to you.
Interesting. I’m not that well schooled on growing tulips since it’s too hot for them here by the time they bloom and they last such a short period of time. I hope the bulbs you were able to salvage perform well for you. They are pretty in your containers.
I really love them. I’ve never had a big tulip fail, I hope this year is not the first.
Fingers crossed for the best bulb show ever!
Oh, I do hope they grow, how lovely they looked last year.xxx
Still waiting to see.