Tulip time – the flame colours are winning out but then again… how chic are Carnaval de Nice and Estella Rijnveld

Tulip Carnaval de Nice Tulip Estella Rijnvald (above) A pyre of Tulip Princess Irene   Fritillaris imperialis - just about holding its own with the fire-bright tulip, Princess Irene

Rococo – just the most flamboyant, frilled, flame-coloured Tulip

Tulip Rococo An early, short-ish tulip, in volcanic shades of scarlet, crimson, cerise and orange. Frilled, puckered and alternately silky-sheeny-shiny and matt, with yellow, green and black, for good measure. The carnival outfit for the outspoken plant in Little Shop of Horrors. An excellent variety for a container - these are in a quite shallow…