The Tulip Garden: Growing and Collecting Species, Rare and Annual Varieties

Phaidon. Apr. 2024. 272p. ISBN 9781838667689. $39.95. GARDENING
Flower grower expert Nicholson’s debut spotlights tulips. The book is enhanced by photographer Montgomery’s (The Art of Making Gardens) stunning images. Nicholson has used her horticultural background to grow tulips for the past 15 years at Bayntun Flowers, her organic floral business located in Wiltshire, England. This book combines that knowledge and expertise with her sustainable environmental and cultivation practices and techniques. It explains the geographical origin of tulips, their social significance in the Ottoman Empire, the dangers of tulip-breaking virus (which causes color-breaking of the flowers) and the stringent standards required by tulip societies. Each tulip variety profile highlights a flower found in Nicholson’s garden. They’re accompanied by magnificent full-color photographs, along with the scientific and common names, height, estimated flowering time, and more. There’s also a perennial list, suggested combinations for container plantings, a seasonal checklist of tulip-specific gardening jobs, a glossary, a list of U.S. and European bulb suppliers, places to view tulip festivals, excellent gardens around the world, and recommended readings and websites to further one’s tulip knowledge.
VERDICT Aspiring gardeners will savor this title that combines a gardening manual with an art book, thanks to Montgomery’s visually lush and stylistic photographs.
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