4 Tips For Tulips In The Vase: How To Keep Them Fresh For A Long Time

Last updated on October 23rd, 2023 at 08:36 pm

4 Tips For Tulips In The Vase: How To Keep Them Fresh For A Long Time

You should cut and care for tulips properly so that they last a long time in the vase. We’ll show you what’s important for the messengers of spring.

Next to roses, tulips are probably the most popular cut flowers in this country. No wonder – tulips delight with many bright colors and flower shapes and are the heralds of spring par excellence. With a few simple tips on care and the correct cutting of the tulip stems, your colorful tulip bouquet will last a long time.

cut tulips correctly

4 Tips For Tulips In The Vase: How To Keep Them Fresh For A Long Time

If you simply put tulips in water right after buying them, they will soon hang their heads. To avoid this, you should first cut them properly:

  • Always use a sharp knife, not scissors, to cut tulips. Scissors can crush the stem, making it even more difficult for water to be absorbed.
  • Make sure that the knife is absolutely clean. This will prevent the cut from becoming dirty later.
  • Now place the knife at least three to four centimeters above the old stem end and cut the stem as diagonally as possible along the direction of growth.
  • By cutting at an angle, you increase the surface area at the cut. This allows the flower to absorb more water and the nutrients it contains more quickly and transport them to the flower.
  • Place each beveled tulip in a vase of fresh water immediately after cutting.
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Tip: When buying tulips at the flower store, you can test the flowers for freshness. To do this, lightly rub the stems and leaves together: a fresh bunch of tulips will squeak.

the right vase for tulips

A special feature of tulips is that they continue to grow unperturbed in the vase even after they have been cut off. As a vase for tulips, you should therefore choose a tall, slender vessel to support the still growing stems on the sides.

Tulips as cut flowers will thank you if their vase is absolutely clean. This is the only way to prevent germs from spreading to the plant through impurities in the cuttings. You can use vinegar essence to clean the vase. After cleaning, rinse the vase thoroughly with hot water before placing the tulips inside.

not good company: tulips and daffodils

Tulips and daffodils bloom at the same time of year, heralding the arrival of spring. Still, you should never combine them in a vase. The tulips would get the short end of the stick and die quickly. This is because cut daffodils release a substance into the water that clogs the cellular pathways of the tulips, making it impossible for them to absorb water and nutrients. Better for a combination are fragrant hyacinths.

the right water for tulips

  • Tulips – like almost all cut flowers – like soft water with low lime content best. If your tap water is rather calcareous, you can simply pass it through a lime filter or decalcify it with sodium bicarbonate beforehand. Optimal for all plants is natural, fresh rainwater from the rain barrel, if you have this available.
  • Add a squeeze of fresh lemon juice to the water to lower the pH, which is good for the tulips. Lemon water also has an antibacterial effect and prevents the development of germs.
  • Nevertheless, you should change the water of the tulips regularly, but at least every two days. Tip: Never replace tulip water completely, but always leave a small residue of the old water in the vase. Completely fresh water stimulates the tulips to grow again, but at the same time they lose life.
  • To avoid rotting, you should remove wilted flowers from the vase. Then you should cut the remaining tulips again and put them in the refreshed water.
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The water level is also important for tulips in the vase: the juicy stems rot quickly as soon as they are too deep in the water. Therefore, fill your vase only to about five to six centimeters. This is perfectly sufficient for the plants.
A bouquet of tulips in a vase thrives ideally at room temperature. If in doubt, place the bouquet too cool rather than too warm. At temperatures above 18 degrees and direct sunlight, the spring flowers wither faster.

Mindfulness when buying tulips

Most cut flowers in flower stores and supermarkets are imported bulk products. They are largely imported from abroad. Most of them come from the Netherlands, where they are grown in heated greenhouses using a great deal of energy. But it is not only the high energy consumption due to greenhouses and transport that is problematic.

Pesticides are also used on a large scale to meet the growing demand for flowers and to protect them from rotting during transport. This is why pesticides are used, which are not only harmful to the environment, but also to the workers in the fields and the florists.

Also with tulips you can pay attention to regionality and seasonality – as with fruit and vegetables. If possible, buy cut flowers from small nurseries or ask in the flower store where the tulips come from. You can also read about the Slowflower movement in this article.


  • James Jones

    Meet James Jones, a passionate gardening writer whose words bloom with the wisdom of an experienced horticulturist. With a deep-rooted love for all things green, James has dedicated his life to sharing the art and science of gardening with the world. James's words have found their way into countless publications, and his gardening insights have inspired a new generation of green thumbs. His commitment to sustainability and environmental stewardship shines through in every article he crafts.

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