Native to rocky and stony areas in the mountains of Iran and northern Iraq,  mountain tulip is a perennial bulb and a member of the lily family, Liliaceae, that also includes fritillaria.   Plants grow 4-8″ tall and have linear , blue-green, glaucous leaves with  undulating margins.  The cup-shaped flowers are 2-4″ across,  usually a shade of red from scarlet and crimson to blood-red, and have a greenish-black blotch in the center and yellow anthers.   The blooms appear on short stems in early spring, early summer, or mid summer depending on the geographical location.   A yellow form exists in the wild.  Mountain tulips are a good choice for rock, cottage, and patio gardens as well as containers.  The genus name, Tulipa, is the latinized version of the Turkish word for turban, Tulbend, referring to the resemblance of the flower to a turban.  The specific epithet, montana, comes from the Latin word mons, meaning mountain, and refers to the native habitat of the plant.

Type: Perennial bulb

Bloom: Cup-shaped flower, 2-4″ across,  usually red but sometimes yellow, in early spring to mid summer depending on the location

Size: 4-8″ H

Light: Full sun

Soil: Average, moderately moist, well-drained

Hardiness: Zones 5-9

Care: Deadhead after flowering

Pests and Diseases: Aphids, slugs, stem and bulb eelworm, tulip fire, tulip viruses, bulb rots

Propagation: Seed; division of off sets in mid summer

Companion Plants: Salvia, alyssum, perennial candytuft

Photo Credit: Wikipedia



By Karen