Wednesday, May 31, 2006

What will I grow next year?

Today I have been thinking about next year's tulips, which varieties will I grow again, which just didn't perform well enough. It seems ridiculously early but bulb catalogues will arrive in the next couple of weeks and eary ordering means early dispatch in the Autumn.
The definate re-order is going to be for Black hero - it is stunning, tall, weather resistant and as it colours up early and opens slowly it can be picked over 4 or 5 days. It is also not available in general flower shops as it is not yet being commercially grown on any meaningful scale.
The bulbs that I will definately be crossing off my list are also easy to spot - they are the ones that are still flowering in the garden as they have not been picked. The irony is that they actually look fantastic, have been flowering for 3 weeks and would both be great garden flowers.
The first is Rosy Wings - a large flowered bluish pink tulip with blunt petals that splay out overlapping each other. The problem with this was that all the flowers came out together and moved from a green bud to a fully out flower in less than a day. People like to buy tulips in coloured bud so they became unsaleable before I had a chance to pick them.
The second is a double tulip - Givenchy - which sounded sumptous in the catalogue description - red with yellow tips. It is a striking flower but the yellow tip is edged with beige and while it looks great in the garden, as soon as you pick it, the beige edge looks as though it is past its best.
Others I shall have to mull over - perhaps I shall wait until the catalogues arrive, pour a large glass of red wine and allow myself to be seduced by the fabulous descriptions of lilies and parrots and flames.

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