Tulips like well-drained soil as we have here. They also like organic matter and a few chicken pellets for nutrition.

I love the species tulips as they tend to be long lived and will naturalize. You certainly don’t need to dig them up each year

I order from the de Jager catalogue and have always been delighted with the results. That said, some tulips do better than others here. I immediately went for the deep magenta ‘Humilis Persian Pearl’ with its bright yellow centre of but it dwindled out after the second year instead of multiplying. A friend suggested ‘Saxatilis’ which I thought would be rather insipid but was struck by its quiet beauty and it lasts and lasts. Another of the same Bakeri group is ‘Lilac Wonder’ which is said to have a darker flower.

The other wild tulip that brings me much April cheer is the red ‘Little Beauty’ described by de Jager as “vivid rosy-purple with a striking deep blue centre edged in white”. I couldn’t describe it any better than that.

I planted them under Rosa ‘Mutabilis’ where they are thriving and multiplying, obviously very happy to be here.