Replanting tulip bulbs

(Question)

I have acquired tulip bulbs that have been dug up. The flowers have dried out and the leaves are still green but wilted. How should I store them?  Do I leave just leave them at this point or should I store them back in the ground until the leaves turn yellow, pull the leaves off then store them in the basement?

(Answer)

It’s very important to allow the leaves of all bulbs, including tulips, to absorb as much sunlight as possible before they turn brown. This helps them photosynthesize so they can store lots of energy for next year’s growth. Now that the tulips have been dug up, they may not bloom again next year. Unless they’re species tulips, these lovely flower bulbs will eventually die out, getting smaller and smaller each year and eventually they would need to be replaced by fresh bulbs. However, it’s worth trying to get another season from them. Replant them where you wish to grow them and water well, allowing their leaves to turn brown.