How to Rid Your Garden of Tulip Blooms

If you’ve planted tulips in your home garden, you may be imagining a yard full of beautiful tulip blooms this year. Tulips certainly produce beautiful blossoms, but they can also pose a few headaches after those blooms wither. To keep your garden healthy, you’ll have to put in some work to remove the blooms and stems. However, the key to doing this properly is knowing when to remove blooms and how to do so in a way that won’t harm your plants.

When to Remove Tulip Blooms

As a general rule, you should wait until the bloom petals start wilting and falling away before you try to remove them. This usually occurs in the latter part of the tulip flowering season, which is during springtime in most climates. However, if you want to pick a few blooms for a flower centerpiece in the home, grab them while they’re at their most luxuriant! If you decide to pick a few of the flowers for an arrangement, be sure to remove the bloom and a bit of stem only. You don’t want to remove the surrounding foliage until it dries out later in the season.

How to Pick Tulip Stalks

After the petals have wilted and fallen off the plant, you can go ahead and remove the plant’s stalks.  By this point, the tulip stalk should have changed to a brown color. When you feel the stalk, it should be dry all the way through. If the stalk is completely dry, you should be able to just hold it near the base and snap it off. However, if it won’t come off easily, you can remove it with a pair of garden shears.

How to Remove Tulip Bulbs after Blooming

Now that you’ve removed the tulip blooms and the stems, you can leave the bulbs in place for the next season or you can transplant them somewhere else. Before you think about digging up the bulb, make sure the entire plant has changed to a yellow or brown color. This signals that the foliage is completely dead.

Use a garden trowel to dig up the dirt around the plant and brush it away until you can see the bulb itself. Carefully work the bulb back and forth in the soil to loosen it from the planting spot and then pull it up. Dry the bulbs and transplant them to your preferred spot.