Bulb to Bloom: Tulips Shine in Spring

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The arrival of Spring is a time of colorful transformation at the Missouri Botanical Garden. Thousands of tulips and other annuals burst into bloom, creating a sea of bright yellows and reds, soft pinks and whites, brilliant orange and deep purple. It’s a favorite attraction for visitors, and makes for a stunning subject for photographers.

Planning before planting

Planning for these floral displays begins a full year before the blooms emerge, mapping out the beds and buying bulbs. In the fall, horticulture staff and volunteers plant tens of thousands of bulbs across the Garden grounds.

Areas with particularly striking displays include the Swift Family Garden, Central Axis, William T. Kemper Center for Home Gardening, and the Kresko Family Victorian Garden.

Senior Horticulturist Julie Hess explains the process in detail in this video:

Come back in the Spring and see what it looks like

The end result of those planting efforts takes months to manifest, and even then the work is not quite done. Among the emerging tulips, fritillarias and daffodils, staff plant hundreds of pansies to fill out the display beds.

Click through the photo gallery at the top of this post to see the transformation, or better yet visit the Garden and see it for yourself!


Cassidy Moody, Digital Media Specialist

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