Sunday, October 7, 2012

Daffodils -vs- Tulips, Which one do you like more?

Sadly another gardening season is coming to a close but one of the last plantings you can do this fall is to plant of your favorite spring blooming bulbs for next seasons early color.  So what types of bulbs should you plant?  We all have our favorites, tulips, daffodils, hyacinth, crocus, and many more but for me I try and keep it simple and plant bulbs that are easy, beautiful and whose blooms last the longest.  
So which type should you plant?  Since Tulips and daffodils are the two most popular let's consider the benefits of both.

Tulips
Tulips are a classic spring flower.  With over a hundred different species of tulips it seems the choice of colors and styles are endless.  For hundreds of years tulips have been grown in gardens, as a potted plant, or to display as fresh cut flowers.  Every garden must have tulips!
















Daffodils
The bright yellow colors of Daffodils are often the very first signs of spring.  These vigorous, long lived flower bulbs thrive in all different types of soil and lighting situations making them very versatile and adaptable to most growing conditions.   What's also great is deers, squirrels and a slew of other creatures won't eat them, unlike tulips.  Daffodils, which are in the Narcissus genus, prosper and multiply with little care and over the past several years are being offered in more and more colors and varieties.  Gardeners can use daffodils to create a beautiful garden border, as cut flowers or also for forcing indoors.  





So which one do I plant, tulips or daffodils?   Lets consider a few of my personal observations and experiences.

1.  Longest bloom time - winner Daffodils
2.  Naturalize and multiply each year more prolifically  - winner Daffodils
3.  Most color choices - winner Tulips
4.  Best at NOT getting eaten by squirrels and deers - winner Daffodils
5.  Flowers which hold up better to wind - winner Daffodils

Well, as you can see I am believer that Daffodils are a better bulb to plant in your garden.  Overall they just do so much more.   The blooms last longer, they multiply easier and you don't have to worry about anyone digging them up for lunch!  However, in fairness, I do plant Tulips in my garden too, how can not you not love the colors.  So many different shapes,  heights, blooming times and colors of Tulips make it hard to not want some in your garden for spring color.  You think of a color and there's a Tulips to match it.  Just be prepared to treat them as annuals.  Although Tulips are classified as perennials I dig them up once the foliage has died and either store them in a cool dry place until next fall, give them away or toss them into my compost pile.

Regardless of which bulbs you like now is the time to plant them! Be sure to visit your local garden center and get them in the ground by Halloween.

Feel free to email any comment or questions to me.  Happy Fall.

Mark Saidnawey
WBZ Gardening Expert
Owner, Pemberton Garden Services
2225 Massachusetts Ave.
Cambridge, Ma 02140
Mark@PembertonFarms.com 






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