Where are the tulips from?

To know where the tulips are from, you have to know their history

Have you ever wondered where tulips are from? These beautiful flowers They are not native to Europe. despite being so popular in the Netherlands. Without a doubt, they are very decorative plants that, for this reason, have become very famous throughout the world.

To learn a little more about these beautiful bulbous plants, we are going to explain in this article where are tulips from and how were they introduced to Europe. If you like these flowers and want to know a little more about their history, I recommend that you continue reading.

Where are the tulips from: Origin

The Netherlands is the main producer and exporter of tulips.

When we talk about tulips, we refer to beautiful flowering plants belonging to the genus Tulip, which in turn is part of the family Liliaceae. This genus is made up of at least 125 different varieties, but very few of them are used for commercial purposes. Contrary to what most people may think for the Amsterdam flower market, where the protagonists are the tulips, These flowers are not native to the Netherlands, but to Central Asia.

Specifically, the origin of these plants is found in the mountains of Mongolia. There they were discovered for the first time. Its extension took place on a par with that of the empire of Genghis Khan, until they reached the Turkish mountains that are in Anatolia. Legend has it that in the mid-XNUMXth century, during his trip to Istanbul, the Austrian Ogier Ghislain de Busbecq saw a Turkish man wearing a beautiful flower in his turban, a flower unknown in Europe until then. Instantly, the European asked his translators to find out more about this exotic plant. However, they believed that he was referring to the turban, so they told him that his name is "thoulypen«. And that's how I know"thoulypen» the word «tulip» arose.

It should be noted that the cultivation of tulips was intervened and, consequently, significantly improved after their introduction in Europe. This took place especially in the Netherlands which to this day continues to be both the producer and the main exporter of these flowers throughout the world.

How did tulips get to Europe?

The first economic bubble was the tulip bubble.

It was at the end of the XNUMXth century when tulips were introduced to Europe. Once there, it would not take long for them to become highly important collectors' items, especially in the Netherlands. By then, The Dutch economy was doing very well. thanks to the success of the Dutch East India Company. This was the first company to make its accounts public and, moreover, the first multinational. It should be noted that, at that time, it had a monopoly on Dutch trade on the Asian continent.

As we have already mentioned, tulips were discovered in Turkey, a country in which they were considered sacred flowers. The Dutch discovered that they had land with ideal characteristics to cultivate these new exotic flowers, They also had very fast growth. Another curious fact that increased both its level of exoticism and its price was its affectation by a virus inoculated by a type of aphid. Thanks to him tulips of different colors were obtained.

Once these exotic plants achieved success in Holland, in the XNUMXth century, a speculative madness broke out in the country. This was so strong that the Dutch even went so far as to buy virtual bulbs. This phenomenon that took place with tulips and the country's economy, giving rise to a new business niche, is known as tulip mania.

Tulipomania: The business of tulips

What exactly happened economically to the tulips in the Netherlands? In the year 1623, the price of a single bulb could reach a thousand guilders. That was outrageous, considering that the average annual income was around 150 guilders. During the following years corresponding to the 1630s, the Dutch thought that the value of these exotic flowers would never drop, which is why they invested huge sums of money in these plants. Of course, the benefits at some point exceeded 450% compared to the initial investment.

Some people even went so far as to sell very valuable pieces of art, farms and mansions in order to acquire just one bulb. Tulip prices were skyrocketing day after day, and a significant part of Dutch high society succumbed to this tentative investment. Consequently, the market for these flowers was growing and growing until creating a very disturbing economic bubble, the first in history (at least of which we are aware).

Related article:
Tulip mania, the tulip business

In the year 1636, the nurseries were left without a workforce due to the bubonic plague epidemic that was raging in the Netherlands. As a consequence, the prices in the market increased. Still and so, tulip buyers kept mortgaging to be able to get more of these precious and invaluable flowers. Those who lost the most were those who did not see the end of the bubble coming. Some people got into debt beyond being able to get on the bandwagon.

At the beginning of the year 1637, the most adroit investors became aware of the bubble and its imminent burst. So they decided to sell their tulips to get out of this speculative business, thus causing a domino effect: Some investors copied his movement and so on until panic was unleashed in the country. Those who did not react in time found themselves with tulips that they had initially bought at the price of gold and that they could no longer sell for the same price, not even close.

In this way, the bubble of tulip mania came to an end. This business ruined many Dutch people and only a few managed to get rich from it, who were the ones who sold on time. Even though the tulip bubble did a lot of damage, These flowers are still today one of the most representative symbols of the Netherlands.

Now you know where the tulips are from and what their history is. Who would have thought that such pretty flowers would cause so much trouble? Luckily now they are more affordable and we can enjoy them in our home.

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