My Tulip Bulbs Are Not Blooming

My bulb's not blooming ! There's a lot of leaves there but no blooms.

Bulbs don't bloom for one reason.

There isn't enough energy in the bulb to form a bud.

Now, why did this happen?

Perhaps the summer before there wasn't enough sunlight and the bulbs didn't get enough light to form a bud.

Maybe the bulbs are in the shade and they require sunlight. Check the growing requirements of bulbs. Combine a dull season with a shaded garden and even bulbs that will survive in shade may not have had enough light for bud production.

tulip caballero

Tulip 'Caballero'

Two Main Reasons Tulips Don't Bloom

First - you watered the plants over top of them. Tulips do not want to be watered at all during the summer. They want to go dormant and if you water your garden, you'll be stopping your tulips from setting buds.

There's no way around this - you water and your tulips will stop blooming.

Second reason, perhaps you cut off the leaves before they went yellow. This means your tulips didn't have enough energy to form a new tulip bud.

In both of these cases, you will not bring the tulip bulbs back into flower the next year. Dig 'em up, and compost them or ignore them and plant new ones.


First Year Plantings

Perhaps you planted the bulb too early last fall and it started to produce a flower stalk last fall.

That flower stalk coming out of the bulb would have frozen off last winter and all you'll see this year are leaves. (if that)

tulip angelique

Tulip 'Unique de France'

Is it a disease?

Some bulb diseases will stop flower production but the majority of bulb problems simply kill the bulb.

If you're not seeing flowers, the odds are it is a cultural thing.

Book cover spring bulbs

Nothing Came Up!

In this case, I'd be tempted to look for squirrels digging them up in the fall and enjoying them or putting them in some other part of the garden.

How Long Can Tulips Live and Bloom

If they get absolutely no summer water, and are on open, well-drained soils, and you do everything right - you may get 3-5 years of bloom before they stop producing.

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