Summering Over Tulip Bulbs


my son brought me a box of tulip bulbs from Holland. Looking online it seems that they should be planted in the fall. what should i do with them now to keep them safe from spoiling? I was wondering if i could/should plant them indoors now?
looking forward to your advice!
from a non green thumb.


Hello:  It is too late to plant the bulbs outside.  Forcing them in the house is quite a lengthy process involving chilling them for a 14 week period, not practical during the summer months.

A common belief is that bulbs, not planted in the fall,  may be stored in a cool dark place covered in slightly moist peat, in an open paper bag, over the summer months for planting in the late fall. Garages and basements are often mentioned as storage places, along with the crisper in your refrigerator.  The temperature should be between 4C-10 C and remain steady.   The goal is to slow down the metabolism in the living bulb to conserve it’s energy and nutrients for fall planting and spring blooming.  These storage conditions are difficult to find in our homes in the summer as basements are often living spaces and garages can get very hot.  But perhaps you can find a cool dark spot in your house, under a shed in the back yard.

Bulbs should be planted in late fall just before the ground freezes. Here is a guide to planting tulip bulbs in the fall.

Depending on the type of tulip, industry’s over hybridization has caused some bulbs to have enough nutrition and energy to bloom for only a couple of years. If they fail to bloom, then dig up the bulbs and compost them.

Personally I have not had luck with storing bulbs over the summer.  Nevertheless your son gave you a wonderful gift and it is worth giving the bulbs a chance to grow.