Cutting Garden

A Freshly Picked Cup of Tulips

Daffodils come back year after year and, more or less, aren’t bothered by deer. It’s different for tulips.

It is such a struggle against the overpopulation of deer that I am not willing to put in the work to have a tulip garden here and so I put them instead in a cutting garden. This is my tomato garden, perfect for a temporary cutting garden. I won’t be able to set tomatoes out until late May/early June. Tulips will be spent by then so I’ll lift them out, give them away and work the soil afresh for tomatoes.

Tomato Garden as Cutting Garden

I buy tulips when they go on sale late in the fall. Because these will not be in a permanent garden I don’t worry that the bulbs have not had enough time to root before the ground freezes. It is hard on the bulb this way but it’s the only way I can have tulips.

This fringed tulip, Crystal Beauty, is one of three varieties I picked up late last fall.

Crystal Beauty Fringed Tulip

It’s best to cut the flowers in the morning while they are still in bud. I let these guys go too long. Oops. I also cut them in the afternoon. It’s all good in this best of all possible worlds.

Published by dunelight

16 thoughts on “Cutting Garden

  1. Deer are voracious. It’s futile to try to keep them from a garden. I am not even attempting to have a traditional garden or a lawn. I live in the woods so I’m going to start doing permaculture. Your tulips sure are beautiful. I suppose you can always drive to Holland to see masses of them during Tulip Time.😊🌷

    1. That black netting? It’s all over my gardens. I use an outrageous amount of liquid fence. As I change my yard over to native plants feeding native pollinators I have to favor plant natives the deer do not eat to the ground. That’s a challenge.

      Boy howdy do deer strip the surrounding dunewoods, especially under-story trees, sapplings, bushes, widlflowers such as Trillium etc. They destroy habitat for so many creatures, mostly birds and our endangered pollinators. It is frustrating as a casual conservationist because it is easier for so many homeowners to to love seeing a mammal like a deer and for them to think cute deer in their yard means they are surrounded by nature. They do not understand we are in the midst of massive die-off of insects and song birds.

      I propagate Michigan native wildflowers and then when I’m driving around to favorite beaches I replant them in empty fields, open spaces, old farmsteads so they are around to feed migrating pollinators during their bloom time. I also have some shade plants. They are difficult to grow and propagate. Have the deer stripped your woods? I had been working with a neighbor to reintroduce some shade natives in our dunes but the deer…

      1. The deer have not stripped the woods here . There are a lot around, but the woods are immense and the coyotes and wolves and hunters keep the population down. They don’t hang around in one place for long. Sounds like a mess where you are. We have lots of wild trillium here but bizarrely the deer ate my mom’s garden trillium..maybe they taste different haha.

        I’ve started a small wildflower meadow in the small clearing behind my cabin. I planted seeds of endemic plants. Very important to read what’s in those wildflower seed mixes they sell. If I haven’t seen it in the woods, it ain’t going in my meadow. I’ve also transplanted. I was delighted to find jack-in-the-pulpit already growing in my woods.:)

      2. Ah! I have various native seeds I could send. What you would like is Iron Weed, native Butterfly weed and tall New England Aster.

        It’s all part of my evil plan to reintroduce natives that host beneficial pollinators.

    1. Thank you! When I saw the pleasing shadows I started moving stuff out of the background so I could take a cleaner shot. 🙂 I work at framing. Drives my family to distraction.

    1. It was the first time I’d bought fringed tulips. I am absolutely crazy for Parrot Tulips. They figure large in old Dutch Masters’ still lives. The other two clumps in the garden are my flamboyant Parrots.

    1. Thank you!

      We went crazy on that shed.
      I chose those bright Caribbean Island colors so they’d sing out in the relentless gray of Michigan winters.

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