The leaves on my tulips under my lavender bush appear every year but not the flowers. Can anyone tell me why and what I can do? Should I dig them up and plant new ones?
Hardiness Zone: 6a
Kathy from Bloomington, IN
Since your tulips are coming up year after year but are failing to bloom, they are either not getting enough sun, or you're removing last season's foliage before it is naturally dieing back. Is your lavender bush providing them with too much shade? Tulips prefer full sun, so I would recommend moving them to a sunnier location in the fall or after the foliage has fully died back. When you plant them in a new site, make sure you plant them at the correct depth in nutrient-rich soil with plenty of drainage. I would also recommend adding a little liquid fish emulsion to the site early next spring. Most tulips come to the end of their productive cycle after a few years, so if after you move them and fertilize them this year, you find them repeating this flowerless scenario next year, I would try your luck with some different bulbs.
Hybrid tulips, which is what most of us have, eventually stop blooming. Also, the fact that they are in some shade may be an issue. I'd move them after they go dormant this fall, plant them in a sunnier spot, and see what happens. If they still don't bloom, then it's time for new ones!
Not enough nutrition and not enough sun. Try some food for bulbs.
I would move them out of the shade also. When you move them, make sure to add some fertilizer to the soil. Make sure not to cut the foilage back to soon after the flowers die back. The bulb stores energy it gets from the leaves to make the flowers the next season.
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