It seems my inability to pass up bargains on fall bulbs at big box stores has rubbed off on Robert who came home from work with about five hundred flower bulbs last week despite the fact that we have thirteen hundred tulip bulbs showing up in about three weeks. With the price he got them for, I wasn't one to complain and actually had room for another bed of bulbs in the flower garden the tulips are planted in.
The tulip supplier I buy most of my bulbs through makes claims regarding how much better their bulbs are than the ones sold at big box stores. For all I know, they may originally come from the same place. I would think of this as sort of a trial between both suppliers although there is another variable in place between the two batches of tulips we are planting this year. The reason our tulips from Colorblends are not coming in for another three weeks is that they recommended putting them through the pre-chill routine in which the bulbs are held at low temps for a period of eight weeks before being put into the ground. This is recommended for areas like ours where the winter doesn't necessarily get cold enough to do this for the plants. Last winter was so warm that even the pre-chill process didn't help much and the tulips we planted grew about six inches tall before blooming way too early for market and way too short for florists. Tulips are by far our biggest gamble but I'm a sucker for them despite the anxiety I know they will cause me.. So, here we go again.