Articles 28 Mar 2024

Can Tulips Grow in Tropical Countries?

Did you know where tulips originally come from? According to Europeana on its webpage, tulips originated in Central Asia and were first cultivated in Iran around the 10th century. Gardeners during the Ottoman Empire era, around the 16th century, played a significant role in cultivating tulips, spreading them to other countries worldwide.

To grow tulips, they require a cold period of at least 12-14 weeks with a temperature of around 13° Celsius. Now, can these flowers be grown in Indonesia’s tropical climate? Let’s find out!

Tips for Growing Tulips in a Warm Climate

Believe it or not, you can grow tulips at home. While it is a bit complicated, as tulips prefer cold temperatures, there is no harm in giving it a try, right? Here is how:

  • Prepare tulip bulbs in cold storage

The cold period is one of the two keys to successfully growing tulips in a warm climate. This term refers to storing tulip bulbs in the refrigerator for 6 to 12 weeks so the roots can bloom when planted in tropical soil.
To prepare tulip bulbs for the cold period, wrap the roots in a sparsely perforated paper or plastic bag. Avoid placing the bulbs near apples as they emit ethylene gas, which can rot the roots. After 6 weeks or more, take the tulip bulbs out of the refrigerator to transfer them to the planting medium.

  • Choose the right planting location

For optimal root growth, tulip bulbs should ideally be planted in cool soil, between 0° and 13° Celsius, receiving about 6 hours of sunlight daily. However, the average soil temperature in Indonesia is 26° to 27° Celsius, and sunlight lasts throughout the day.
Therefore, the planting location for tulip bulbs is the other crucial key to planting tulips in a tropical country. Instead of planting directly into the ground, choose a planting medium (such as a pot) that can be easily moved around. Plant the tulip bulbs in the medium and place them in a location exposed to direct sunlight for at least 6 hours a day. Avoid placing the bulbs in extremely hot areas, as intense heat can stress the tulip bulbs and trigger growth problems.

  • Regulate humidity

In addition to low soil temperature, tulips need the right humidity to bloom perfectly. So, you should set a well-planned watering schedule. Ideally, newly transferred tulip bulbs need to be watered until the entire area of the planting medium is submerged.
After that, water the tulip bulbs once a week for the first month after planting. Once the first month passes, let the tulip bulbs grow until entering a season with stronger sunlight. In warm-climate countries such as Indonesia, the recommended time to plant tulip bulbs is in December or during the rainy months.

Easy, right? It is not too difficult to grow tulips in a tropical country. If you find it troublesome to try it yourself at home, you can also visit tulip gardens in several Indonesian cities at higher altitudes, such as Batu in East Java, Lembang in West Java, Cibodas in West Java, and Cianjur in West Java.

Before visiting tulip gardens in those Indonesian cities, make sure to get your Domestic Travel Insurance from MSIG Indonesia. With Travel Insurance from MSIG Indonesia, you and your family will receive comprehensive protection while traveling, both domestically and internationally, ranging from benefits covering personal accidents, medical expenses, to travel inconveniences.


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