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Hydroponic Tulips – Features, Bloom, How to Grow and Care

by gardeningit
Hydroponic tulips

In simple words, Tulips that are grown in water are known as Hydroponic tulips. These are different from regular Tulips but equally stunning. Their bulbs are still intact, they are less stressful to maintain and they have a longer life span, so a lot of plant enthusiasts like to opt for this variation of tulips instead.

Classification of Tulips

  • Family: Liliaceae
  • Subfamily: Lilloideae
  • Genus: Tulipa

About the Genus Tulips

The word tulip comes from the Persian language and means “turban” because of the resemblance. Tulips are perennial geophytes that have large, bright, colored flowers. The genus has about 75 species and these are divided into four subgenera. The tulip plants were originally found in Southern Europe to Central Asia but currently have become widely cultivated. Growing tulips hydroponically has become an upcoming trend in many areas of the world.  Their natural habitats are mountainous areas with warmer climates.

Origin and Distribution

Tulips have a vast distribution across the world starting from South East of Europe and Turkey, through the Palestinian territories and the Sinai Peninsula. They grow from Armenia and Azerbaijan to the Caspian Sea and Uzbekistan. They are most commonly found growing in Central Asia.

Hydroponic Tulips Features

Foliage and Stem

Tulips have broad leaves that appear to be blue-green because of their waxy coating on top. The plant grows about 2 to 6 leaves individually.


Hydroponic tulips are not evergreen. Every time they bloom, they start to die off. However, if given good care, these plants have a longer life span than regular tulips growing in soil.


Most hydroponic tulips grow about 6 to 24 inches tall and spread 12 to 24 inches wide.  However, there are many varieties in the plant and each one has its own individual growing capacity. Their size also depends on the environmental conditions that they are growing in.

Temperature Tolerance

Moderate temperatures are well for these Tulips to grow.  Extremely hot or cold environments are not favorable at all. Slight variations away from the optimum range of temperature can cause these plants to wilt a look and happy.

Humidity Tolerance

Just like temperature, excess moisture in the air is not the best for these tulips. Since they are already growing in water, added humidity in the environment may cause damage.


Beautiful cup-shaped flowers grow on these plants during the spring season. Each flower as about three petals and three sepals. These tulips are cultivated in about every color you can think of. The petals have a transition in color, darker at the bottom, and lighter as it moves upwards.


Since Hydroponic Tulips grow in water it is very obvious that they will not do well in drought-like conditions. Since they are habitual of growing in the water now, shifting them to a drier environment will not do them good.

Pressure Tolerance

Tulips are delicate plants and do not tolerate pressure or being stepped on. So, make sure that you keep them somewhere high and safe from being damaged in any way.

Disease and Pest Resistance

Tulips growing in water are generally safe from pests and diseases. However, if left unattended, water can gather different varieties of microbes growing on it. In warm, humid environments algae growth can be a huge problem. So, make sure that your plant is sitting in optimum conditions and you change the water frequently.


Generally, under good hydroponic tulip care, these plants are fast growers and take only months to grow to their full size. However, during the dormant phase, their growth might slow down. This is completely natural, so you do not need to worry about the plant during this time.


Tulip plants contain alkaloid and glycoside elements that are toxic to humans if ingested.  These elements are especially found in bulbs in heavy quantities. This can cause dizziness, nausea, stomach aches, and even death if ingested in large amounts. Hence, keep pets and children away from these plants.


Depending on the care and conditions given to the plant, the flowering phase of hydroponic tulips lasts about a week. On the whole, these plants live for several months.


Since they do not require any soil amendments or special care, they are relatively easy to maintain, even more so than regular Tulips. This is why they are a good option for gifting purposes and if you do not have a lot of time to give to your plants every day.


Tulip plants tend to become dormant once a year during fall. During this time, their growth reduces or stops. Do not panic and let the plant rest. It will come back once the dormancy phase is over.

Hydroponic Tulips Care

Hydroponic Tulips care requires optimum temperatures, generally on the cooler side, and lots of natural sunlight. You do not need to fertilize them unless the variety requires it. Just keep changing the water weekly and make sure 1/3 of the bulb is out of the water.

Water Requirements

These plants are especially sensitive to being overwatered so make sure that at least 1/3 of the bulb is uncovered and out of the water. You can change the water in the vase, just be gentle and careful not to damage the plant’s roots. You can use regular tap water to grow these plants.

Sunlight Requirements

These plants need an optimal environment with lots of natural light. Make sure that this light does not hit the plant directly. The best way would be to put these plants behind sheer windows or under diffused light.


As for temperatures, room-temperature do well for these tulips. However, they prefer low temperatures. The lower the temperature is, the longer the tulips will stay alive. The optimum temperature range would be 60 Fahrenheit to 65 Fahrenheit.

Humidity Requirements

Tulip plants growing in water do not need any extra elements of humidity from the outside. However, extremely dry air is not very favorable either. Regular indoor humidity is generally optimum for these plants to grow.

Fertilizer Requirements

Unlike tulips growing in soil, you do not need to fertilize these plants very often. However, it still depends on the variety that you are growing. If a particular variety of tulips requires any fertilizing, it will be mentioned on the package. So, make sure you read the instructions before you start growing the tulip in water.


You can shift the Hydroponic Tulip plant to a bigger vase if you feel like the plant is outgrowing its current one. However, try to grow the plant in a suitable vase in the first place. Frequently changing vases can lead to damaging the plant’s roots and stunt its growth.

Grooming and Pruning

Tulip plants do not need a lot of regular grooming or pruning. Let them grow as they please and if you see any extra foliage developing, you can trim it off with scissors.

Cultivation and Propagation

Growing tulips hydroponically instead of in soil in a transparent vase allows you to see the progress of the plant and grow it mess-free. The first thing that you need to propagate these plants is a healthy bulb. Take a suitable vase to grow these tulips and fill them with beads or bubbles at least 2 inches of height. Cooldown some of the bulbs and add them to the vase on top of the pebbles. Put the vase in optimum light and cool temperature and change the water weekly without damaging the growing tulip.


Week1-3: Put the bulb inside the vase on top of the pebbles and place it under optimum conditions.

Week 4-6: Roots will start to appear by this point. Choosing a transparent vase will help you see this growth better.

Month 2-3: The plant will start to sprout and you can shift it to a bigger vase if you want.

Some Common FAQs

Can I Plant Hydroponic Tulips in Soil?

It is possible to plant hydroponic tulips in soil, but it is not recommended. Hydroponically grown tulips planted in soil have a higher chance of developing disease and/or pests.

Will Hydroponic Tulips Bloom Again?

Once the plant dies off it cannot rebloom. They need a special environment with lots of sunlight and cool temperatures for at least three months. Even in these ideal conditions, they will not bloom as well as they did the first time.

How to Care for Tulips After They Bloom?

After flowering trim off the dead flower from the stem and let the plant die. Maintain the water level in the vase. Once the foliage tries out completely you will start seeing new bulbs growing. Cut off the foliage while leaving the roots intact.  Store the bulbs, dry them out and cool them as much as you can. You can now use these bulbs to grow more Tulips in your garden or a new vase.

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Displaying Hydroponic Tulips

The fact that you can grow these plants without any dirt or mess makes them an absolute hit in the botanical market. They are beautiful and easy to maintain, so you can put them anywhere you want. The beautiful foliage will add a quick, elegant pop of color to your room. Just make sure that you put them somewhere they cannot be mishandled. You can put them on shelves and on top of coffee tables and side tables in your favorite vase that matches the design of your interior. They are also very good options for gifting to your friends and special people, as they do not require much care, live longer, and look very beautiful.

Hydroponic tulips for Sale

When you are looking for hydroponic tulips for sale you can find them in the form of both bulbs and fully grown plants. Just make sure that the belt is big enough and looks healthy. An unhealthy bulb will result in a smaller tulip.

Final Thoughts

Hydroponic tulips grow in water and reduce the amount of dirt and mess involved in maintaining them. You can put them anywhere in the house with natural light and warm temperatures and they do not need a lot of grooming. Just keep them away from your pets and children because they are very delicate and they can be easily ruined and are very toxic. Growing these plants is very easy indoors and you can display them in any room.

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