ORANGE FAVORITE, 1930        Rarest & Web-Only
This deliciously fragrant flower is “one of the best of all tulips,” writes Anna Pavord in her monumental Bulb, although it’s “not for the faint-hearted.” (Does that sound like a challenge?) Its buds open into “stupendous,” glossy, ruffled blooms of orange feathered with wisps of rose and green. Although the harvest was so small we didn’t put it in our print catalog this year, here it is! Parrot, 20” , zones 3a-7b(8bWC), from Holland. See our other unusually fragrant tulips. Last offered in 2017. We are awaiting word from the Hortus if they will have enough to offer us next fall. Please subscribe to our newsletter for an alert.
PHILIPPE DE COMINES, 1891        Rarest & Web-Only
“Dark polished mahogany,” is how Peter Henderson described this tall, late tulip in 1929, but it always reminds us of dark sweet cherries. Despite its dramatic looks, ‘Philippe’ had vanished from American gardens until we reintroduced it in 1998. The great ‘Black Parrot’ is its ruffled sport (mutation). Single Late/Darwin, 20-24”, zones 3a-7b(8bWC), from Holland. Chart and care.
TU-30
5/$15
10/$28.50
PRINCE OF AUSTRIA, 1860        Rarest & Web-Only
This is the tulip that launched Old House Gardens way back in 1993. When the last US catalog dropped it, I knew I had to do something. It was just too wonderful to let go extinct. It’s one of history’s most fragrant tulips (violets? orange blossoms?), with a scent that will draw you across the garden on a sunny day. It’s also so vigorous that it’s been returning for well over a decade here with no special care. Scarlet maturing to almost-orange, Single Early, 12”, zones 3a-7b(8bWC), grown exclusively for us in Holland. Last offered in 2017. We are awaiting word from the Hortus if they will have enough to offer us next fall. Please subscribe to our newsletter for an alert.
PRINCESS ELIZABETH, 1898        Rarest & Web-Only
In 1995 this elegant beauty was featured in a Garden Design article about a tiny new source devoted to heirloom bulbs, and suddenly we weren’t so tiny anymore. Well-described in the 1931 Scheepers catalog as “rose-pink with topaz lights and hints of fuchsia shadowing,” it was lost to us in 2002 when the last Dutch farmer quit growing it, but thanks to the Hortus we’re once again able to offer it to you. Single Late/Darwin, 18-22”, zones 4a-7b(8bWC). Last offered in 2017. We are awaiting word from the Hortus if they will have enough to offer us next fall. Please subscribe to our newsletter for an alert.
SILVER STANDARD, 1760        Rarest & Web-Only
A lot has changed since 1760 (heck, the United States wasn’t even the United States back then), but ‘Silver Standard’ is still one of the world’s most exciting flowers. A true broken tulip, it’s a dazzling combination of purest white boldly splashed with red and guaranteed to leave you and your garden visitors standing open-mouthed in awe. Single Early, 12-14”, zones 4a-7b(8bWC), from the Hortus Bulborum. Last offered in 2017. We are awaiting word from the Hortus if they will have enough to offer us next fall. Please subscribe to our newsletter for an alert.
THE LIZARD, 1903        Rarest & Web-Only
Weird name, cool flower. With “much rich beauty to commend it” (in the words of the 1929 Scheepers catalog), this true broken tulip is a swirling tapestry of “all shades of deep lilac and dark reddish rose” feathered and flamed on creamy yellow and white. “The whole is rich and strange” – and glorious! Single Late, 20-24”, late-blooming, zones 4a-7b(8bWC), from the Hortus Bulborum. Last offered in 2017. We are awaiting word from the Hortus if they will have enough to offer us next fall. Please subscribe to our newsletter for an alert.
VULCAN, 1913        Rarest & Web-Only
Named for the Roman god of fire, volcanoes, and metalworking, this ruddy bronze and copper-colored tulip is one of the last surviving Dutch Breeders, a group of tulips in unusual “art shades” that were the height of fashion during the Arts and Crafts era. In the words of that illustrious half-Vulcan Mr. Spock, may it “live long and prosper!” Dutch Breeder/Single Late, 20-24”, zones 4a-7b(8bWC), from the Hortus Bulborum. Last offered in 2017. We are awaiting word from the Hortus if they will have enough to offer us next fall. Please subscribe to our newsletter for an alert.
WAPEN VAN LEIDEN, 1760        Rarest & Web-Only
Did Benjamin Franklin grow this legendary tulip? He could have! Its lively rose and white petals are illuminated by a broad yellow flare at the base, and its antique shape echoes the pointed-petaled tulips of Elizabethan herbals. Wapen means “coat of arms,’ and it was to Leiden in the late 1500s that Clusius brought the first tulips ever grown in Holland. Single Early, 12-14”, zones 4a-7b(8bWC), from the Hortus Bulborum. Last offered in 2017. We are awaiting word from the Hortus if they will have enough to offer us next fall. Please subscribe to our newsletter for an alert.
ZOMERSCHOON, 1620        Rarest & Web-Only
A true survivor from the days of Tulipomania, this legendary broken tulip may be the most beautiful tulip we’ve ever grown. Its long, pointed petals are exquisitely patterned with shades of strawberry on cream. Try one yourself and you’ll understand how people could once have traded fortunes for tulips like this — in fact, for this very tulip. 16-18”, zones 4a-7b(8bWC), from the Hortus Bulborum. Chart and care.
TU-03
1/$18
3/$49
5/$77.50
10/$144
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