b tulip farmWhen the last of the deceased tomato vines came out of the garden in November, I put my tulip bulbs in. Come April and early May the result is what Doug calls The Tulip Farm. It’s a convenient arrangement because the fence keeps the deer and rabbits out of the flowers, which are all done blooming by time to use the raised beds for tomato plants.

b tulips gatheredEvery few days I go out with my flower bucket and cut a slew of Pink Impressions, Apricot Beauties, Salmon Pearls, and Darwin Whites from the garden’s largesse, and move Spring into the house.

b basket and vasesI’ve already been picking daffodils since late March, but the thing about daffodils is, if you put them in a vase with other flowers the other flowers will die. The culprit is said to be daffodil sap, which protects them from being eaten by critters and allows me to plant them anywhere at all in the whole yard. Fierce stuff. Cut daffodils have to be sequestered in their own vase for an amount of time that depends on how fresh the daffs are and how sensitive the other flowers. Some people give them just a couple of hours, but I haven’t had such luck. To get around the timing problem and still have mixed bouquets, I use several small vases set next to each other, for example like this basket containing three medium and three small vases.

b tulip basketWhen I put my current arrangement together the two small outer vases got only daffodils, leaving the tulips and other flora in peace. A little moss covers the vase edges, and the basket pulls it all into a nice, tidy, well-balanced array for the living room.

b full bloomBut sometimes nice and tidy just doesn’t cut it. For those times, I get out my big crystal vase and let the tulips go wild.

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