As spring takes hold across the county, the stunning Hever Castle tulip display is in full bloom. Arguably one of the best gardens to see tulips in Kent, the garden is alive with over fifty different varieties of this springtime favourite.
Head Gardener, Neil Miller, described the tulip display at Hever Castle as “a hidden gem” commenting that “the south-east is renowned for tulip festivals and the explosion of colour along Pergola Walk brings a carnival like atmosphere to the formality of the Italian Garden.”
The Hever Castle gardeners plant up to 5000 tulip bulbs each year, with the varieties carefully selected to complement the colour theme of the spring bedding displays, and to provide a long flowering season.
Each year the bulbs are dug up at the end of the season, with many replanted in the borders along Pergola Walk adding to the vibrant mix of colours in these less formal tulip displays.
Keep your eyes peeled for some of these stunning tulip varieties across the Hever Castle gardens:
- Queen of the Night – almost pure black
- Ad Rem – red tipped with yellow
- Blue Aimable – lilac with a hint of blue
- Kingsblood – deep scarlet
- Olympic Flame – “mimosa” yellow flamed with red
Top Tips for your Tulip Display
Highly prized in Holland in the 17th century, at one point tulips were so popular that some varieties were worth ten times the annual income of a skilled worker. Create your own festival of tulips with our top tulip tips:
- Plant your tulip bulbs in October/November to around two or three times the depth of the bulb.
- Tulips are frost hardy, love full sun, flourish in fertile soil, but dislike wet conditions.
- Ensure you plant your bulbs away from strong winds, and beware of squirrels digging them up after planting!
- Tulips look stunning in pots, as borders, or planted amongst the grass.
- Each tulip will typically flower for a short season, so echo the Hever Castle gardeners and plant a mixture of varieties that flower at different times from March through to May to prolong your display.