Test Gardens Track Seasons

September 8, 2017 by Mary Hosier

How can a handful of tulip bulbs help us understand climate and seasons across the Northern Hemisphere?

Students getting ready to plant in Oceanside, New York. Photo by Julie McGahen

Tracking Change with Tulips
Each fall, people across the Northern Hemisphere plant Red Emperor tulips to help monitor seasonal change in a scientific way. In the spring, when the plants emerge and bloom, gardeners report their data to the maps. One garden at a time, the relationship between climate, geography and the greening of spring is revealed.

Tracking A Sign of Spring

Springtime events occur at different times in different places. Track Test Gardens to discover how different climate conditions affect plant growth.

Driving Question
  • How do Earth’s different climate conditions affect where, when, and how plants grow?