TULIP, Tulipa, a genus of plants of the natural order liliacco, having an inferior bell-shaped perianth, of six distinct segments, without nectaries; a sessile three-lobed stigma, a three-cornered capsule, and flat seeds. The bulb is fleshy, and covered with a brown skin. About thirty species are known, mostly natives of the warmer parts of Asia. The name tulip is supposed to be derived from the P,Tsian name tludeban, which also signifies a turban. The most famous of all florists' flowers is the GARDEN tulip (T. gesneriana), which is from 18 in. to 3 ft. high, with a smooth stem, bear ing one erect, large flower; the leaves ovate-lanceolate, glaucous, and smooth. The tulip is a native of the Levant ; it was brought from Constantinople to Augsburg by Conrad Ges tier, iu 1559, and was rapidly diffused throughout all parts of Europe. The varieties in cultivation are innumerable. The tulip mania of tha 17th c. in Holland is noticed in the article FLORISTS' FLOWERS. The tulip is still most sedulously cultivated in Hol land, especially at Haarlem, from which bulbs are largely exported. It is prized mere ly for the size and beauty of its flowers; its smell being rather unpleasant. Great atten tion is paid to the cultivation of tulips, not only in the gardens of the wealthy, but often in those of the humbler inhabitants of small towns and villages, in which beautiful beds of tulips may often be seen. Tulips succeed best in a light, dry, and somewhat sandy soil. Bulbs are planted in the end of October, or beginning of November, and the
flowers are produced early in summer. Beds of choice tulips are protected in spring by hoops and mats; and in the flowering season an awning of thin canvas is spread over them, which greatly prolongs the duration of their beauty, as they are soon spoiled by exposure to strong sunshine. Tulips arc propagated by offset bulbs, and new varieties are raised from seed.—Another species of tulip, cultivated iu gardens is the SWEET SCENTED tulip, or VAN Tircr, tulip (T. suaveolens), which has a short, hairy stem, and yellow or red flowers, inferior to those of the common garden tulip in beauty, but prized for their fragrance, and for appearing more early in the season. It is often cul tivated in pots in windows. It is a native of the s. of Europe. The Win) tulip (T. s.gl resin's), a native of many parts of Europe and Asia, is admitted into the British flora, but is a very doubtful native of Britain. It is common in the woods and vineyards of Germany and the s. of Europe. It has a slender stem, narrow lanceolate leaves, and a somewhat drooping, fragrant, yellow flower. It develops offset bulbs at the end of fibres thrown out from the root, at some distance from the parent plant. Its bulbs are eaten in Siberia, although bitterness and acridity characterize the bulbs of this genus.