Tulips add beauty to gardens around the world

Published: Sunday, Sept. 16 2012 3:00 p.m. MDT

Within this group we find the hundreds of different sizes, shapes and types.

Tulips grow from 4 inches to 28 inches high and usually produce one flower per stem. A few cultivars produce multiple flowers on the same stem. Tulips are generally cup or star shaped with three petals and three sepals that are nearly identical in size and shape.

The origin of the name is uncertain, but may come from Persia. It is thought that some tulips resemble a turban, and the name is derived from that.

Although the plants normally would be grown in a Mediterranean climate, they can be planted in areas with cool, moist winters, like those that flourish in Holland.

Growers plant them in late fall and the cool, moist winters provide chilling that the bulbs need, plus the moisture to grow the next spring.

The bulbs spend the summer out of the soil because after they bloom, they are dug, sorted and prepared for sale.

They are then replanted or sold the next fall to propagate more tulips or to beautify gardens around the world.

Garden tips

The Utah Giant Pumpkin Growers weigh-off is Saturday, Sept. 29, at Thanksgiving Point, from noon to 3 p.m.

For information on entering pumpkins and other giant vegetables, go to www.utahpumpkingrowers.com/index.html

The Red Butte Garden Bulb and Native Plant Sale is set for Friday, Sept. 28, from 3-7:30 p.m. and Saturday, Sept. 29, from 9 a.m.-7:30 p.m. in the courtyard behind the Visitor Center. Visitors will find a selection of native and waterwise perennials, trees and shrubs, as well as a variety of ornamental grasses and flowering perennials. Staff and volunteers will answer questions and assist with plant selection. Regular garden admission applies; members get in free.

Larry A. Sagers is a horticulture specialist for the Utah State University Extension Service at Thanksgiving Point.

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