Selecting tulips for their vase life

Certain groups of tulips last longer than others. The Parrot and Viridiflora groups,which can take many days to develop their strongest colors, are especially long lasting,often exceeding ten days. Parrots are bizarre to some, with their scalloped andragged edges. No matter how vivid their color will become, they hang on to randomgreen patches for many days, hence their longevity. Viridiflora means green flower,and all of this group maintain a green stripe on the outside of each petal, helpingthem look showy and fresh.The Fringed group, named for the ¼-inch-long edging of fine fringe surroundingeach petal, also have a good vase life, with large blossoms on tall, slender stems.Some of my favorites that have been successful at the Clackamas Community Collegecutting garden plot are these:
‘Estella Rijnveld’: (Parrot) This flashy, fanciful flower is wildly serrated, and thecolor is red and white like peppermint candy.
‘Groenland’ (syn. ‘Greenland’): (Viridiflora) This is one of the original greenstripedtulips; in this case, bright spring green divides the rose-pink petals.
‘Maja’: (Fringed) The soft yellow color of this thickly fringed tulip is creamy andrefined. The flowers are large.
‘Queen of the Night’: (Single Late) Mentioned earlier, these flowers are amazinglydark, making a perfect small cup. They are among the latest tulips to bloom.
‘Shirley’: (Triumph) The white flowers of ‘Shirley” are indeed a triumph of subtlety.They appear creamy white to start with, edged on each petal by the thinnestpossible line of purple. As the flower ages, this widens and bleeds into the whitebackground, giving the mature flowers a flamed-in-purple look.
‘Union Jack’: (Single Late) This tulip is what ‘Estella Rijnveld’ would look like ifshe were not a Parrot type. The flower is a large chalice of pure white randomlyflamed with true red.

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