With their stately form and luscious colors, it’s no wonder tulips are such popular spring-flowering bulbs. There are hundreds of tulip cultivars, which are grouped by size, form and bloom time. One especially striking one is ‘Prinses Irene’, a Triumph Group cultivar introduced in 1949. It has a classic single cup-shaped flower and blooms in mid-spring. ‘Prinses Irene’ has an eye-catching color combination--glowing orange petals, each with a flame pattern spreading up from the base. Plant ‘Prinses Irene’ tulips in large groups in late fall for a spectacular display next spring.
Common name: ‘Prinses Irene’ tulip
Botanical name: Tulipa ‘Prinses Irene’; may also be listed as ‘Princess Irene’
Plant type: Bulb
Zones: 3 to 8
Height: 12 to 16 inches
• Sun: Full sun
• Soil: Well-drained loam or sandy loam
• Moisture: Even moisture; avoid overwatering when bulbs are dormant
• Mulch: None
• Pruning: Deadhead flowers when they fade.
• Fertilizer: Work in bonemeal or other phosphorus fertilizer before planting bulbs; apply a balanced fertilizer in early spring.
Pests and diseases
• Unfortunately, deer and rabbits are fond of tulips.
• Combine ‘Prinses Irene’ with other Triumph tulips in shades of orange and purple for a dramatic statement.
• Most hybrid tulips will return for only a few years at most, so many gardeners treat them as annuals.
All in the family
• Prinses Irene tulip is a member of the lily family (Liliaceae).
• Other garden bulbs in the lily family include lilies (Lilium spp.) and fritillaries (Fritillaria spp.)
Where to buy
• Brent and Becky’s Bulbs; 877-661-2852; https://store.brentandbeckysbulbs.com
• Old House Gardens; 734-995-1486; www.oldhousegardens.com
• White Flower Farm; 800-420-2852; www.whiteflowerfarm.com