Here is a pretty pink and blue bulb combination of Muscari armeniacum ‘Blue Spike’ (grape hyacinth) and Tulipa ‘Foxtrot’ (a double pink tulip) for mid spring. The blooming times coincide in my garden to create an appealing mix.
Muscari armeniacum ‘Blue Spike’ is an extra full grape hyacinth, with double florets along the flower stalk. With all of the open petals, the stalks are very thick and showy. Planted closely, they make a luminous river of blue at the front of the garden bed. The grape hyacinths are 20 to 25 cm (8 to 10 in) tall, while the tulips behind are 30 to 35 cm (12 to 14 in) tall.
This photo shows a closeup of the grape hyacinth just before the abundant petals have fully opened.
Here is an image of a flower after it has fully opened. You can see how lavishly the blue petals are packed on the flower stalk, making the grape hyacinth look like a miniature hyacinth.
The photo above shows the intense blue colour of a group of the Muscari bulbs. This is my favourite bed right now. Just around the corner of the bed is a group of Brunnera (Siberian bugloss) with blue flowers too, and in the other direction are the blue Pulmonaria (lungwort) flowers.
The ribbon of Muscari bulbs winds through some Campanula (bellflowers) in the picture above. When these brilliantly coloured bulbs die back for the summer, the Campanula here will replace them with their own blue flowers. Muscari look great with perennial Tiarella, too
Beside the Muscari are some Tulipa ‘Foxtrot’, a double pink tulip with extra petals that make them extra showy.
The ‘Foxtrot’ bulbs first open in a white colour, with curled and overlapping petals.
Here is part of the group of tulips, just after they opened, still showing white petals.
Soon the ‘Foxtrot’ flowers develop their pink colouration. You can see the overall pale pink colour, with medium pink edges to the petals.
Here a ‘Foxtrot’ tulip bulb is opening up more, showing the graduations in pink shades, and developing a rose pink colour.
This group of four shows the colour range they can have, from mostly white when new, to the stronger pink colouration as the flowers develop.
I had trouble getting the overall photos to show the pink colour of ‘Foxtrot’ next to the vibrant ‘Blue Spike’, since at a distance the camera (or photographer) seems to capture the tulips as more pale than they are in person. There are over 50 of the tulip bulbs, but as sometimes happens with bulbs, a purple one sneaked into the package. There is also a bright red one with an orange edge. They are not well camouflaged in this pink and blue colour scheme, but I haven’t had the heart to remove the imposters yet.
When I planted the tulips and grape hyacinths last Fall, I wasn’t sure if they would bloom at the same time, especially because bulbs can have such short flowering times, so I’m happy to see that the bloom period overlaps closely. The Muscari started a few days before the tulips, and I think they might still bloom after the tulips are finished. Despite the snow we had over the last two days, the bulbs are still flowering upright. Both are sturdy bulbs, as well as being pretty. You can see more details of the pink Foxtrot tulips in this follow up post.
Do you have any favourite bulbs combinations?