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Wish You Were Here – Tulips in Breezand

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Did you know that tulips were responsible for the first recorded market bubble? Or that they don’t originate from Holland?

Tulips actually aren’t native to Europe – they are believed to have been brought there by ambassadors from the Ottoman Empire in the 1500s. These exotic plants, with their tall stems and bright, bowl-shaped flowers, were unlike any cultivars grown in Europe at the time. After their introduction, tulips became so popular in the Netherlands that a phenomenon known as “tulipomania” ensued. As tulips gained popularity with Holland’s upper class, the prices of tulips rose astronomically, and investors sunk fortunes into the purchase of bulbs. By the winter of 1637, single bulbs could be purchased for 150 times the average Dutch income, and tulips were actually used as currency in some cities!

Today, tulip bulbs can be purchased inexpensively, but they still provide the trademark beauty of the Dutch garden – and a way of live in the growing region. Hollands Kroon, a municipality in North Holland, is one of the biggest growing regions for Dutch bulbs in the country, and tulips are a specialty here! Each spring, the fragrance of this major export fills the air.

A majority of Breck’s tulip bulbs are sourced in Breezand, a quaint village located in Hollands Kroon. Our Dutch directeur, Ben, visits each spring to check out new varieties and meet with our Dutch growers. Breezand is painted with tulips of all shades in spring – it’s easy to feel a bit of “tulipomania” here!

Be sure to check out our selection of fall-planted tulips available for pre-order, and enter to win a trip to visit Breezand (and many of Holland’s other sites for bulb-lovers)!


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Lauren has written 15 post in this blog.

April 22, 2015
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