This year, our tulips are mostly done giving space to other flowers to shine. Here is to the national flower of Turkey.
Tulips, these colorful perennials, have a very interesting history. It’s hard to believe, that in early 17th century Holland the price of tulip bulbs skyrocketed to such extent that a certain type of rare tulip bulb was selling for about $1500 in today’s price. This was the famous Tulipomania, the great tulip craze.
Starting as wild flowers in Central Asia, cultivated by the Turks of the Ottoman Empire, introduced in Western Europe in the 16th century, gaining popularity in Holland at that time, tulips today are a common presence in many gardens and parks. Even though they don’t sit on the top of the list of my favorite flowers, I do like their colors, the variety of their shapes and sizes, and their ability to react to the changes of temperature with opening and closing their petals. When Steve and I fly to Central Europe, on our way back to the US we buy our Dutch tulip bulbs at the airport in Amsterdam. Over the years, we have had a great variety of beautiful tulips growing occasionally to waist height and tempting the occasional passerby to take one with them. This is a risk, planting by the fence outside of the actual garden, but it’s worth it to add a little color to the neighborhood.