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Our Tulip Garden Field Notes
Nelson Rural School, Miramichi, New Brunswick

Teacher Lisa Sullivan took her grade 2 & 3 students on a year-long study of seasonal change in the tulip Test Garden. Their Field Notes share observations in the garden from planting until bloom.

  • For each important event in the garden the students recorded temperatures. Can you match up the soil temperatures with the event as you watch the garden progress from planting to bloom?
Which Soil Temperature Matches the Test Garden Date?
42b 52 41 29
40°F, 2°C 52°F, 11°C 41°F, 5°C 30°F, -2°C

October 7, 2011: Planting Day

  • 50 Red Emperor tulip bulbs planted
  • Sunny but very, very cold.
  • Some of us wearing hats and mittens

November 30, 2011

  • Soil Temperature was 40F
  • It was warm and rainy
  • No tulips yet
nov 30

January 13, 2012

  • It was cold and there was snow on the garden
  • Siol temperature was 30F
  • There were no tulips growing that we could see
  • The snow plow dumped snow onto our garden

Our partner class in Dallas, Texas planted their tulips on January 5, 2012. Our class made predictions about whose garden would emerge first. It was a tie.
** We found out that the tulips in Dallas, Texas emerged on January 23rd.**   

February 10, 2012

  • Sunny and cold
  • We had more snow and the plow dumped more onto our tulip garden
  • We couldn't find the soil to test the temperature

Our friends in Dallas, Texas told us that their tulips bloomed on ** February 29, 2012.**  We are still waiting!

March 16, 2012

  • Our garden has a huge hill on it! More storms for the plow
  • It was a beautiful day with 34F temperature
  • Still no sign of our tulips. We don't think we will ever see them!

March 23, 2012

  • Big News! We wer surprised that our tulips emerged!
  • We thought the snow would never melt (There's only one bump left.)

April 13, 2012

  • More tulips have emerged- 49 all together
  • Sunny and warm with soil temp of 41F
  • No snow is left in the schoolyard
  • Lots of sand from the parking lot sits on the garden

April 26, 2012

  • We could see big green plants in the garden
  • Some had buds, but no tulips in bloom yet
  • Soil temperature was 52F!
  • We saw worms and spiders in the soil

May 7, 2012

  • BIG NEWS! Our tulips have finally bloomed!
  • Everyone was so excited!
  • They are beautiful red tulips and inside they were yellow, black and purple
  • It took 7 months for them to bloom
  • It was a great day!

We really liked this project. It was fun comparing our garden with our friends in Texas. We found out that the weather is different there and a lot warmer. They hardly get any snow. That is probably why their tulips bloomed first.