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I planted 60 tulip bulbs in November. Something or things has eaten practically every one. What would have done that and how do I prevent it if I plant more this year please?



Although many tulips have come up through the soil it's still a bit early to see signs of certain types. Some of mine are only just starting to poke through the soil.

You haven't described the damage. But if it's the case that the leaves have appeared but have been virtually stripped away it's almost certainly slug damage as they can be a serious pest of tulips. With the excess wet weather this winter slug attack has been much worse than usual. In future you'll need to deal with slugs below the soil surface as well as above.

If there's no sign of any leaves even severely damaged ones then the chances are the bulbs have rotted because of poor soil drainage when planted. Tulips won't tolerate sitting in water. Planting in clay soils can be a problem with very wet winters.

23 Feb, 2014


Slugs can be a real problem with young tulip growth. As they seem to sit underground and munch the leaves, im not sure what can be done....maybe add lots of sharp grit when planting.

If the bulbs have gone altogether, squirrels are often the culprit. I lost around 6,000 of the little species tulips to squirrels but they didn't touch any of the big ones.

23 Feb, 2014


Badgers also will eat Tulip bulbs. We lost all the newly planted ones to them last year.

23 Feb, 2014


Slugs are the normal culprits.

23 Feb, 2014


I put new ones in in thick clay, adding grit and compost as I went along. I can see a few coming up but I think many will have rotted in all this rain.

23 Feb, 2014

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