Tulips are one-of-a-kind, their shape and vibrant colours are arguably one of the most-loved spring flowers! The unique bloom makes for a perfect gift this Christmas, and perfect addition to home decor this festive season!

The History of Tulips

While many believe tulips originated in Holland; they actually began as a wildflower in Turkey as early as 1000 A.D! The word ‘tulip’ is derived from the Persian word ‘dulband’, meaning ‘turban’. The link between Turkey and tulips continues, as they make an appearance in much of their art and culture. It is the National Flower of Turkey.

The flower’s popularity spread from the Middle East to Europe, particularly in the Netherlands later in the 17th century. During this time, the tulips became prized, prices soared and crashed. The nutritional benefits of the bulbs helped the Dutch overcome famine during World War II, and believe it or not, these pretty flowers are still eaten today in countries such as Britain and Afghanistan.  This lovely bloom can be found just about anywhere today, though they are most often identified as “Dutch tulips.” This beloved blossom is celebrated in festivals throughout the world in the spring months (either May or September).

Symbolism of Tulips

Tulips are known to symbolise the perfect love. Like many other flowers, specific colours carry their own meanings.

For example, red tulips are associated with love, while purple tulips symbolise royalty. The meaning of white tulips send a message of forgiveness and yellow has evolved from hopeless love to an expression of cheerful thoughts.

Rich in history and meaning, it is not surprising why this bloom is so popular all around the world! An all round perfect flower, in shape, colour, as it can bring such vibrance to any space!

Type of tulips

Commercially grown tulips have one flower per stem and their leaves have a rubbery, fleshy feel to them. Most commercial tulips available in the UK’s wholesale flower markets are between 30 & 40cm tall. They are wholesaled in wraps of 50 stems at a time. French tulips are available in taller stem lengths, typically between 50cm and 70cm tall and are a big favourite for their use in wedding flowers. French tulips are the cream of the crop – they are much more expensive than Dutch tulips, but are just fantastic!

Tulips will always bend their necks towards the light, so a good tip is to keep them tightly packed in their paper wrapper until they are needed and then wire the stems to keep them straight. Longer French tulips can be carefully twisted around other flowers in an arrangement with stunning effect!

There are 15 recognised groups of tulips available to the wholesale flower market, but to keep things simple, here are examples of the most popular six:

  1. Single Early Tulips – blooming early to mid season with single cup shaped flowers.
  2. Double Early Tulips – blooming early to mid season with bowl shaped double flowers.
  3. Triumph Tulips – blooming mid to late season with single cup shaped flowers.
  4. Darwin Hybrid Tulips – blooming mid to late season with ovoid shaped single flowers.
  5. Single Late Tulips – blooming in late season with single cup shaped flowers.
  6. Parrot Tulips – blooming mid to late season with upright frilly edged flowers.

Top tip:

Tulips will always bend towards the light. It is always a good idea to leave the wrappers on while conditioning. Tulips can also be wired before arranging to prevent bending stems.

Never leave cut flowers in direct sun light, near a radiator, in a draft or near fruit. (The gas used to ripen fruit will harm most flowers). Keep the tulips in a cool place and always keep out of the way of children.

How to condition?

To get the best from your wholesale cut tulips please read the care instructions below carefully:

  • Cut the stems at a 45 degree angle with a sharp knife.
  • Fill sterilised buckets with cold water and add flower food.
  • Place the tulips in the buckets.
  • Leave over night to condition before using.

For more information, please visit our website or call us on 01394 385 832!

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