Tulipmania Art

Tulipmania Art

Strong Love

Tulips are fragrant

While it is true that the majority of tulips are odourless, some of them are blessed with quite a pleasant and sometimes intense fragrance. But what exactly do tulips smell like?

A study conducted in Japan in 2012 examined the floral volatiles emitted by the fresh flowers of cultivar tulips and identified over 130 chemical components generating their scents. The compounds identified in the examined tulips allowed the researchers to arrange the flowers according to their odour profiles into the following 9 scent groups:

The Dutch government published a guide on how to prepare tulip bulbs correctly, instructing people to first cut them in half and remove their flower germs, which accumulate toxins. The guide contained as well various recipes of soups, porridge, fried, roasted or mashed tulip bulbs and even ways of making flour from tulip bulbs, for baking bread.

Hard times are luckily long behind, but the tulip bulb has preserved its status of food item. Modern cuisine has explored an reinvented the tulip bulb as a culinary treat, which can nowadays be found on the menu of luxury restaurants.

Strong Love

In Persian mythology the tulip is considered to be the flower of love

The Persian legend of the red tulip tells the love story of Farhad and princess Shirin. While having no noble origin or title and nothing else to offer but his loving and open heart, the young man was put to the challenge by the father of the princess, who did not want his beloved daughter to marry a commoner. Thus, the challenge was no easy undertaking, the young man had to cut a passage through the rocks of a mountain and make a stream flow through to the palace. Farhad’s love was so strong that he started his work right away.
The Dutch government published a guide on how to prepare tulip bulbs correctly, instructing people to first cut them in half and remove their flower germs, which accumulate toxins. The guide contained as well various recipes of soups, porridge, fried, roasted or mashed tulip bulbs and even ways of making flour from tulip bulbs, for baking bread.

Hard times are luckily long behind, but the tulip bulb has preserved its status of food item. Modern cuisine has explored an reinvented the tulip bulb as a culinary treat, which can nowadays be found on the menu of luxury restaurants.

Pretty Woman

A stylised tulip, enciphering the word “Allah”, represents the national emblem of Iran and is featured on the Iranian flag

Originating from Persia and being called “laleh” – “Flower of God” in Persian, in spite of its expatriation and naturalisation across the world, the tulip remained faithful to its homeland, colouring its valleys for centuries, year after year, with its red blooming carpets. Deeply rooted into the local mythology and culture as a symbol of god, love and martyrdom, its symbolism remains even in modern times key to its motherland, nowadays the Republic of Iran, to the extent, where a stylised image of the tulip representing the word “Allah” has been adopted in 1979 as the national emblem of the country and is featured on the Iranian flag.
The Dutch government published a guide on how to prepare tulip bulbs correctly, instructing people to first cut them in half and remove their flower germs, which accumulate toxins. The guide contained as well various recipes of soups, porridge, fried, roasted or mashed tulip bulbs and even ways of making flour from tulip bulbs, for baking bread.

Hard times are luckily long behind, but the tulip bulb has preserved its status of food item. Modern cuisine has explored an reinvented the tulip bulb as a culinary treat, which can nowadays be found on the menu of luxury restaurants.

Esperanto

There are tulips that have more than one flower per stem

Although the classical image of the tulip most of us picture is a single flower crowning the top of the stem, it is not uncommon for tulips to produce more than one flower on the same stem. Such tulips are called multi-headed or bouquet-flowering tulips and although they do have a single main stem growing from the bulb, this main stem branches out into several smaller secondary stems, each producing a blossom. This way one single tulip stalk may work as a bouquet on its own, featuring a cluster of 3 to 6 full-sized flowers blooming at once.

Très Chic

Almost 80 years after the Dutch tulip mania, Lale Devri – the tulip era, occurred in the Ottoman Empire

Although the tulip arrived to the Netherlands from the Ottoman Empire, the passion for this special flower reached its peak in the Ottoman Empire only 80 years after the tulip mania shook up the Netherlands.

This period of incredible love for the tulip at the court of Sultan Ahmed III is called Lale Devri – the tulip era. It was a relatively short and peaceful period, famous by a special fondness of the high-class society for the tulip, which became synonymous to status, nobility and privilege and was traded for exorbitant prices.

Ballerina

The most praised Turkish tulips, unlike the tulips sought after by the Dutch during tulip mania, had elongated and pointed, almost dagger-shaped petals.

It is curious how the standards by which a flower’s beauty is appreciated may differ across time, countries and cultures.

We all remember the majestic Semper Augustus, which fascinated the Dutch with its striking flames and streaks during the tulip mania times. The mesmerising broken tulips were the embodiment of perfection during the Dutch Golden Age.

All That Jazz

Tulips keep growing after having been cut

Seems surprising, but is absolutely true, the regenerative powers of tulips allow them to keep growing after being cut and placed into a vase. If they are happy with the temperature and do not get too direct and hot sunlight, they can bring you joy for about a week in the vase and gain, in the meantime, up to 8 cm in height. Well that’s an idea for a bouquet time-lapse in spring 😉 What do you think about it, are you in?

Ridgedale

In the Victorian Times hundreds of Tulip Societies were established all over Britain, one of them, the Wakefield and North of England Tulip Society is still thriving nowadays

Great Britain has its particular love story with the tulip. The bulbs reached England in 1577 and ever since the tulip was extensively grown. Many new varieties of tulips were bread, which bear collectively the name of English Florist’s Tulips. The popularity of tulips reached its peak at the beginning of the 19th century, when many growers came together establishing hundreds of tulip societies across the country. They were holding annual flower shows, where prizes were awarded for the most beautiful tulips. Participation at the shows recorded incredible numbers, for example during the Great Northern Tulip Show held in 1849 in York, over 2000 tulips were entered and it took the judges 6 and a half hours to examine all the flowers and decide upon the winning ones.

Sadly, after World War I the number of tulip societies decreased dramatically and with the closure of the Royal National Tulip Society in 1936, there remained one last tulip society in Great Britain, which is the Wakefield and North of England Tulip Society, established in 1836 and still active nowadays, holding beautiful yearly flower shows of English florist’s tulips. In May 2020 the Society had to hold its 185th flower show, but it was unfortunately cancelled due to Covid-19 prevention measures. Let us hope that the spring of 2021 will be more generous and the 185th show will take place delighting the jury and the viewers with amazing tulip blooms!

Eagle Wings

A folk tale from Devon tells that fairies lulled their babies at night in the cups of tulip flowers

The story has it, that there was once an old lady who planted an amazing flower garden and her tulips were so beautiful, that the fairies chose their flower cups as cradles for their tiny babies. They say the fairies were so grateful to the old lady for her amazing tulips, that they presented the blooms with bright colours and a delicate fragrance. Sadly, after the old lady passed away, the beautiful garden was destroyed by the new harsh owner and, to revenge themselves on him, the fairies took away the smell of the tulips.

Apeldoorn’s Elite

There are vases especially designed for holding tulips

Tulips have mesmerised people for centuries in different countries around the world and it was somehow normal and even inevitable that such a praised flower would inspire for the creation of a special recipient, designed to emphasise its beauty and uniqueness.

It is hard to think of a vase especially designed for one type of flower, but the tulip has even two vases for itself and they both come from two different countries, which adulated the flower for centuries.