Tulips are known around the world for their iconic cup-shaped blossoms, reminiscent of a ballet slipper. However, there are thousands of tulip cultivars, many of which look like different flowers altogether!
Double tulips are known in the gardening world for their resemblance to peonies. If you prefer a full, luxurious bloom, you’ll love these types of double tulips for your garden.
What Are Double Tulips?
Double tulips are tulip varieties that have an extra layer of petals, giving them a fuller and more voluminous appearance compared to single tulips. This additional layer creates a unique and eye-catching effect that sets them apart in the garden.
There are two primary types of double tulips: double early tulips and double late tulips.
Double early tulips bloom earlier in the spring season. They are known for their compact size and shorter stems. The flowers of double early tulips often have a more rounded shape and are densely packed with multiple layers of petals. Their vibrant colors and charming appearance make them a delightful addition to early spring gardens.
Double late tulips bloom later in the spring, usually after the single tulips have already flowered. They tend to grow taller, thanks to increased sun exposure. The flowers of double late tulips often have a more elongated shape.
With those differences in mind, here are some stunning double tulips to add a touch of luxury to your garden.
Botanical Name: Tulipa ‘Abba’
Tulipa ‘Abba’ is a lively double early tulip that boasts a bold red hue with elongated petals tapering to a sharp point. The center is a cheerful yellow that attracts pollinators and adds a lovely contrast.
Hybridized by the Bakker Brothers seed company, the debate rages on about whether this tulip predates the musical group of the same name.
This compact tulip grows no more than 12 inches tall. However, its low growth makes it more resilient to wind and rain than other double tulips with heavy blossoms. Plant in full sunlight with well-draining soil in USDA zones 3-8 for optimal growth.
Botanical Name: Tulipa ‘Black Hero’
Tulipa ‘Black Hero’ adds a dramatic element to the garden. Its fully double, velvety black blossoms with rich, deep purple tones give it a luxurious appearance. This double late tulip unfurls each petal in layers, truly living up to its name.
Adding the Black Hero tulip to the garden provides a unique appearance, as it is one of the few double black tulips available. To encourage growth, plant it in full sun and well-draining soil. The Black Hero tulip reaches a height of 24 inches with a spread of 4 inches, suitable for USDA zones 3-8.
Botanical Name: Tulipa ‘Blue Wow’
The Blue Wow is an impressive “blue” tulip— even though the blue hues are subtle. While there are no true blue tulips, this lilac-toned tulip gets close.
Its thick cluster of velvety petals curves inward, resembling the shape of an artichoke. The base leaves reveal a touch of blue as the stem transitions from a vibrant green to a muted violet-blue shade.
Although classified as a double tulip, the Blue Wow stands apart. Its unique characteristics make it a captivating addition to any garden. Reaching a height of 18 inches, this tulip thrives in USDA zones 3-8. Ensure it receives full sun in a wind-protected area with well-drained soil for optimal growth.
Botanical Name: Tulipa ‘Charming Beauty‘
The Charming Beauty tulip, a mesmerizing double late variety, showcases petals in shades of peachy orange and yellow. As the season unfolds, the peach tones gradually transform into a captivating and intense vibrant orange. Its stunning orange blossoms are beautifully complemented and contrasted by the deep green foliage.
Resembling peonies with their delicate and luxurious appearance, this orange bloom possesses an enchanting allure. Tulipa ‘Charming Beauty’ is the perfect choice for those who enjoy the opulent aesthetic that peonies are renowned for.
Tulipa ‘Charming Beauty’ reaches a height of up to 24 inches and boasts a width of 4-5 inches. Plant in USDA zones 3-8 for favorable growth.
Botanical Name: Tulipa ‘Monte Carlo’
The Monte Carlo is a cheerful yellow tulip with an eye-catching bowl-shaped blossom. This double early tulip is a recipient of the RHS Award of Garden Merit for its showy, fragrant blooms.
The vibrant yellow petals have ruffled edges that embody the spring sunlight. With proper care, this award-winning double tulip will grow up to 12 inches tall, with petals stretching up to four inches across in full sunlight.
Plant Tulipa ‘Monte Carlo’ in full sun and well-draining soil. This double early tulip performs best in USDA zones 3-8.
Botanical Name: Tulipa ‘Orange Princess’
One of the most treasured types of double tulips, this variety boasts compact blooms that exhibit an exquisite layering of rich orange petals, creating a lush and voluminous appearance. The exterior petals are marked by deep scarlet stripes, for a unique color blend that looks like a living sunset.
The frilly, yellow-orange stamens densely pack the bloom’s center, adding contrasting color and texture. With proper care, this tulip will grow 18-22 inches tall with a spread of 3-4 inches when in full bloom.
Orange Princess does well in full sunlight in well-draining soil. Plant in USDA zones 3-8 for optimal results.
Botanical Name: Tulipa ‘Verona’
Named for the home of Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet, this romantic flower has lush cream-colored petals, often with green or pale pink markings along the exterior. The bowl-shaped bloom adds a touch of elegance and a sense of luxury to any garden.
This early bloomer grows up to 18 inches tall and is often more resilient to wind and rain than other double tulips. However, you should consider planting Verona in a sheltered area to keep the bloom flourishing as long as possible.
Plant Verona in well-draining soil and full sunlight in USDA zones 3-8 for optimal growth.
Botanical Name: Tulipa ‘Purple Jacket’
One of the few purple types of double tulips, the Purple Jacket showcases a full, lovely blossom of deep purple petals surrounding an ivory center for a charming contrast. Some Purple Jacket cultivars have bold pink tones and white variegations.
Tulipa ‘Purple Jacket’ is a late-season tulip that typically blooms after earlier tulips have come and gone, starting to show in early May (depending on the climate). Purple Jacket reaches up to 20 inches in height with spreads as wide as 4-5 inches.
Plant the Purple Jacket tulip in well-draining soil and full sunlight. Place this sensitive bloom in a sheltered area to protect it from strong winds and rains. USDA zones 3-8 are optimal for growth.
Botanical Name: Tulipa ‘Mount Tacoma’
Favored among tulip collectors, Mount Tacoma is a lush, white, peony-like double tulip that blooms in the late spring. Its snow-white petals have touches of ivory along the center, with the edges curling gracefully inward. This showstopping tulip looks incredible when paired with pale pink tulips Tulipa ‘Angelique.’
This late bloomer will grow up to 20 inches tall with proper care. It should be planted in a wind-sheltered area to protect its fragile petals from the elements.
Mount Tacoma prefers full sunlight and soil with suitable drainage in USDA zones 3-8.
Botanical Name: Tulipa ‘Angelique’
Tulipa ‘Angelique’ is another double late tulip with a captivating appearance. Its petals are a soft and delicate blend of blush pink and creamy white, creating an exquisite pastel hue that varies from flower to flower. Angelique’s petals are full and voluptuous, with ruffled that resemble a blooming rose.
This award-winning late bloomer will grow 16-20 inches tall with proper care. Like many double tulips, its heavy blossom is sensitive to wind and rain. Plant Angelique in a sheltered area to support its longevity.
Plant Angelique in well-draining soil and full sun in USDA zones 3-8 for best results.
Botanical Name: Tulipa ‘Peach Blossom’
Tulipa ‘Peach Blossom’ is similar in appearance to Tulipa ‘Angelique’ with more vibrance and bold pink tones. This double early tulip is a great way to kick off the growing season before Angelique blooms. The bowl-shaped blossom boasts splashes of pink and peach on a white backdrop, with the ruffled petals gently curving inwards for a delicate, graceful aesthetic.
This early bloomer will only reach 12 inches tall. Its low growth is ideal for open garden plots, as it is resilient to wind and rain.
Plant Peach Blossom in full sunlight and loamy, well-draining soil in USDA zones 3-8.
The photo featured at the top of this post is © Tatiana Alex/Shutterstock.com
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