Blooming between March and May with the bulbs being planted in the previous fall, tulips are some of the most colorful of flowers and come in many varied shapes. Some Tulips come back year after year but in cold climates most are “annual” meaning they grow and bloom only once. (Plants and flowers that return every year are called "perennial") Tulips can grow almost anywhere except tropical climates and can be fooled to grow indoors by placing the bulbs briefly into the freezer and planting them near a sunny window. Tulips make perfect cut flowers and continue to grow in the vase. To maximize a cut flower's life, always trim the stems under water and replace the vase water every other day.
For hundreds of years Holland has grown the most tulips in the world. A springtime drive through the Dutch countryside is a sight to behold. Acres and acres of brightly colored bands of tulips are beautiful to see from a car window, but the view from an airplane is truly otherworldly. When seen from above, the fields create beautiful stripes and forms that look like giant paintings, or perhaps the worlds largest picnic quilt!
Photographs by Bruxelles5 on Flickr