A recent post by Carol, at May Dreams Garden, reminded ProfessorRoush that he previously started a draft blog entry on the species tulips in his landscape, the few colorful little clumps that add very little to my overall garden ambiance, but which mean so much to me as they sneak back into the garden each year.
Species tulips, you see, are one of my garden guilty pleasures, a little niche of my garden that others seldom discover, visible and yet hidden behind the more blatant garden performers. In my garden, alternatively Zone 5 or Zone 6 depending on the whims of weather and weather maps, a few species tulips return reliably, while large and showy Dutch tulips return in annually diminishing numbers until they finally just don't return at all.
|Tulipa clusiana var. chrysantha|
If you're in search of a similar guilty garden pleasure, I'd recommend planting both or either of these little ladies in an out-of-the-way place of your garden. You all know what I'm talking about; a spot with a gardening "no-tell-motel" sort of feel, away from the beaten path, a seedy spot where you can sneak away and enjoy some brief illicit pleasure, just you and them. The best meeting times between gardener and species tulip are always, as one would expect, in the middle of the day, a gardening nooner of sorts. Mea culpa, with these little Sirens in my garden, I can easily be be accused by a careful observer of slipping home more often at noon for a couple of weeks each April. Mrs. ProfessorRoush thinks the frequent visits are for her company, but you can keep a secret, can't you?