Tulip (Tulipa hybrids and cultivars)

Making its comeback this year, Tulipmania returns! With eleven tulip (Tulipa hybrids) cultivars showcased in this year’s display, it is definitely a feast for the eyes! The natural origin of the cultivated tulip is believed to be from the mountains of Central Asia, where many of the over 100 Tulipa species still grow in the wild. Different horticultural groups of tulip cultivars, such as the Triumph tulips, the Double Early tulip, and the Fringed tulip are being exhibited!

A closeup of Tulipa ‘Queensland’. Take a look at this beauty!

One of my favourites is definitely Tulipa ‘Queensland’! Unlike the clean edges of most tulips, this cultivar has fringed edges which makes it very unique looking. Decked in reddish-pink coloured petals, this beauty is definitely eye-catching!

Did you know that the frayed edgings of these tulips are not a feature from any wild tulip species? The crystalline edges of fringed tulips are actually derived from a unique mutation found in cultivated tulips and bred into many different cultivars!

Top view of Tulipa ‘Queensland’, showcasing the abundance of petals.

This fringed cultivar also belongs in the double flowered group! If you noticed, unlike the other groups, they are packed with petals, thus also sometimes referred to as peony tulips due to their resemblance to the peony flower. Some fringed cultivars may also be scented too!

Another pink tulip, Tulipa ‘Foxtrot’!

Another favourite is definitely Tulipa ‘Foxtrot’ - yes, you guessed it, pink is my favourite colour! Similar to Tulipa ‘Queensland’, this cultivar is also from the double flowering group, but without the fringe. Nevertheless, it stands out with its ombre pink petals, and is known to deepen in colour as its flowers age. This cultivar had been awarded the Royal Horticultural Society (RHS) Award of Garden Merit due to its good performance and ability to grow well!

Doesn’t the deep red of Tulipa ‘Strong Love’ really stand out? Look at how nicely it contrasts with its sibling cultivar, ‘Strong Gold’!

Belonging in the largest group of tulip varieties, the red tulipStrong Love’ and its sibling cultivar, yellow ‘Strong Gold’ belong to the Triumph group. The tulips in this group have large cup-shaped flowers, and come in almost every colour! Triumph tulips are known for their traditional “tulip” flower shape as well. Come on and check out the other beautiful cultivars, and show us your favorite ones by tagging us on social media!

Written by: Ng Yu Qin, Horticulturist, Research and Horticulture

Yu Qin is always looking for ways to pick up new skills and put them to use. She spends most of her time with orchids and enjoys learning something new about them every day!

This article is part of our What's Blooming series.