Tulips in History!

Posted on February 5, 2016 by Lesley Arnold

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“But I have always thought that these tulips must have had names. They were red, and orange and red, and red and orange and yellow, like the ember in a nursery fire of a winter’s evening. I remember them.” Neil Gaiman from Caroline
In the middle of a snowstorm today in New England, I found myself thinking about spring! With so much snow cover in the garden right now, I looked out the window and wondered when I will see those first green shoots of bulbs. I love to look for the daffodils and tulips peaking up from the soil in my garden. It’s like searching for hidden treasure. Tulips have become very common in our nation, but at one time they were treasured like gold! I read that though now we plant our tulips from bulbs, it can take up to seven years for a tulip seed to mature into a plant. That is certainly something to treasure!
images-1History buffs might be interested to know that in the 17th century tulips were such a hot item that bulbs couldn’t be grown fast enough to keep up with the demand. Because the demand was so great and people in Europe, especially Holland, so loved the rich colors of the delicate flowers, tulips became a treasured item that was worth a lot of money. This resulted in “Tulipmania” and the worth of a tulip bulb became astronomical. There are historical records that say that a single tulip bulb could bring in the equivalent of 64,000 U.S. dollars today!
So today, in the middle of a snowstorm, I’m thinking about my tulips and I’m thinking I will order some bulbs to plant this fall!
 

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