© RHS / Tim Sandall


Border tulips

Botanical name: Tulipa

Common name: Tulip

Border tulips provide a myriad of colour and flower shapes which light up the spring garden. Use them to fill borders and containers, or plant en masse in bedding schemes alongside forget-me-nots (Myosotis), or wallflowers (Erysimum). 


Upright stems, clasped by strap-like leaves, are topped with large bowl-shaped flowers in white, pink, orange, red, yellow or purple-blue. Different flower shapes add to this diversity, with double, fringed, lily, parrot and viridiflora forms. 


Border tulips grow best on well-drained soils in a bright sunny position. They also grow well in containers of free-draining compost. 


Tulips will not grow well on very dry soils, or those that are excessively wet. They also dislike shaded sites.  

Did you know?

Border tulips normally only flower well in their first year. For this reason they are often treated like bedding and removed after flowering. Some varieties will persist for longer if lifted and dried.  

Growing guide

Border tulips we recommend

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Useful advice

Bulbs: planting

Bulbs: planting

Bulbs: propagation

Bulbs: propagation

Stem and bulb nematode

Stem and bulb nematode

Tulip fire

Tulip fire

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