Spring 2008 Posted Thursdays: Jan. 9, Feb 7*, 14, 21*, 28, Mar. 6*, 13, 20*, 27, Apr. 3*, 10, 17*, 24, May 1*, 8.
Final: May 8, 2008
In our last Update of the spring season we see a lot of red on the map. Soon most of you will have watched the unfolding of the petals on your tulip plants. Were you surprised by the way spring spread across North America? Try a new art project from Cook School to create a colorful abstract of your tulip flowers. And, a huge thank you for participating in this big experiment. See you back in the fall!
May 1, 2008
The map is filled with red as we celebrate May Day today. Gardens bloomed across the Northeast while students were away for school vacations. Explore the botany of the tulip flower. Can you identify the parts of your tulip? What color is the pollen? Visit 5 classes in Altoona, PA, who planted tulip bulbs in the fall and then proudly posed among the flowers last week. Photo: Sherry Buck
April 24, 2008
Gardeners report that they are really “seeing” tulip flowers for the first time. “They have purple pollen,” wrote one classroom. Go out and create a quiet zone around your garden, then create a poem using your senses. Try navigating around the map to find Asia and Europe. And meet some gardeners from around the world.
April 17, 2008
Tulips can’t travel, but they certainly can move! This week we explore the movements of tulip flowers as the sun moves across the sky. Grab your camera or your notebook and watch what happens in your garden. And snow falls in Wyoming, but the tulips are growing anyway. What happens when the fickle spring weather brings a snowstorm?
April 10, 2008
What does a tulip really look like? Explore the attributes of emerging tulips. Then use a fun art technique to re-create a flower using a style from Georgia O’Keeffe. Check out the visual project created by VoiceThread. Learn more about how students can create, comment, or edit an audio visual presentation. And a hard lesson passes on after a bed of tulips never emerged.
April 3, 2008
Despite April Fool's Day storms tulips are emerging and blooming across the map. A closer look may reveal some interesting questions. Why are the tulips emerging differently on the East and West coasts? Explore a possible reason for this phenomenon. Focus in on some good questions for our Expert and submit them this week.
March 27, 2008
Over half the tulip gardens have now emerged! Many gardens have even emerged after big snow and rain. The tulip is a hardy plant! What signs of spring are you seeing in your neighborhood? Look around and record what you see on the day your tulips emerge and bloom. A great record for the future. Use the diagram to study flower anatomy when your tulips bloom. We also share some of the blooming garden pictures and stories.
March 20, 2008
As we celebrate the Spring Equinox we explore conservationist John Muir’s quote, "When one tugs at a single thing in nature he finds it attached to the rest of the world." How can tulips emerge in Alaska before they emerge in MY garden? Put your ideas to paper. And what might happen if it snows on your tulips? Find out more this week!
March 13, 2008
The map is greening up across the continent! Can you describe the pattern on the map? If your tulips are up are you amazed how they are growing? Monitor their growth this spring as you record temperatures and growing conditions. Then slow down and look at the flowers. Study the parts that make the beautiful whole flower. Meet some gardeners from La Jolla, CA. And check out our week’s resources.
March 6, 2008
Things are greening up! Study this week’s map and compare it to the past 2 years. Does the tulip garden map look like the average temperature map? Compare. With spring around the corner check your tulips, but also observe other plants this winter and spring. Can you feel and see hints of spring?
February 28, 2008
Some wacky spring weather has the tulips confused in GA this week, but they are starting to bloom. Are temperatures ever steady in the springtime? Learn about an amazing Lego robot that monitors temperatures in the garden. Experiment with freezing leaves and other things to understand what is happening when the cold weather hits your emerging tulips. And does spring really journey north? Dig in and learn more this week.
February 21, 2008
Just a quick update this week. Things are greening up! Study this week’s map to see some interesting patterns. Compare February 2008 with past years. With spring around the corner check your tulips, but also observe other plants this winter and spring. How do they survive and change?
February 14, 2008
How do temperatures affect the tulip garden? Temperatures in many places flip from cold to warm this time of year. How tough are the tulip plants? We’ll learn about this little plant and how it has adapted to survive harsh climates. Find out about pigments and why tulip leaves are red when they first appear. Then try an experiment with pigments! And how much detail can you see in a photograph?
February 7, 2008
Just a quick update today to give you the latest data for your map. We’re seeing some green on today’s map. Do you see a pattern emerging as moderate spring-like temperatures arrive to parts of the continent? Study the map and predict what it will show in one week’s time. Watch your gardens closely and report in when you notice your tulips popping out of the ground.
January 9, 2008
We have emerging tulips! The New Year brought our first gardens showing green. Will early emerging tulips be safe from the cold? Find out. Let’s look at maps. Did you know they can help you predict the arrival of spring in your neighborhood? Get to know them now so you can use them this winter and spring.

Welcome and Orientation
Get ready to track spring's arrival in the Northern Hemisphere! Watch for one January update, then weekly TULIP GARDEN UPDATES will be posted here every Thursday, from February to May. (See schedule above.) Find out how to report your tulips emerging and blooming on real-time migration maps >>.