Tulip Day – May 13, 2023

Tulip Day is observed every year on May 13. It is a day to celebrate tulips, which are brightly-colored, spring-blooming flowers. Tulips originated in Central Asia, where they grew wild, though cultivation of the flower began in Turkey around 1000 A.D. From then on, they became highly prized in the Ottoman Empire, such that they were specially cultivated for the pleasure of the Sultan. The flower’s sojourn to Europe took place in the 16th century when they were planted in the Netherlands for medicinal purposes. Today, tulips are still heavily associated with the European country.

History of Tulip Day

The origins of Tulip Day are largely unknown. However, the tulip flower itself has a rich and colorful history. It all began in Central Asia, where the tulip flower grew wild. However, it wasn’t intentionally cultivated until around 1000 A.D. in Turkey, where it was grown for medicinal purposes. It grew in popularity in the Ottoman Empire during the 16th century, such that it became a favorite of the Sultan, who demanded its cultivation for his enjoyment. In the 18th century, the ‘Tulip Era’ or the ‘Age of the Tulips’ began, with the flower’s fame rising to dizzying heights. It even became a crime punishable by exile to buy or sell tulips outside the empire’s capital.

The tulip made its debut in Europe when a biologist called Carolus Clusius began planting it in Holland, Netherlands, during the 16th century. The University of Leiden hired Clusius to perform research on medicinal plants. Clusius’ Turkish friend, who was the ambassador of Constantinople (Istanbul), sent tulips to him for the project. This was the genesis of the tulip bulb fields in the Netherlands, which are still in existence today.

In the 17th century, the tulip moved from being merely medicinal and became a garden flower for beautification, causing prices to soar. This eventually led to ‘Tulipomania’ or ‘Tulip Mania,’ a period when tulips became so sought-after that they became a currency of sorts. The love of tulips became so frenzied that people would exchange their property for a single tulip. The Dutch government even had to place restrictions on tulip trading. Eventually, the tulip market crashed in 1637, leaving those with heavy investments in the flower at the losing end. Today, tulips are still associated with the Netherlands, the world’s largest producer of tulip bulbs.

Tulip Day timeline

1000 A.D.
Tulips are Cultivated

Cultivation of tulips begins in Turkey.

16th Century
Tulips Arrive in Holland

Tulips are first planted in Holland by Carolus Clusius, a biologist from Vienna.

17th Century
Tulips Become Garden Flowers

Tulips become garden flowers for beautification, not just for medicinal purposes.

1636
Tulipomania Begins

Tulipomania begins in the Netherlands.

Tulip Day FAQs

What do tulips symbolize?

Tulips have different meanings depending on the particular color, but in general, they symbolize the perfect love.

How many colors of tulips are there?

Tulips can be found in almost all colors of the rainbow and in different tones and shades of each color.

When is Tulip Day in the Netherlands?

In the Netherlands, Tulip Day is celebrated annually on the third Saturday of January.

Tulip Day Activities

  1. Send some tulips

    Take this opportunity to show your loved ones how much you appreciate them. Send someone a bouquet of tulips and surprise them.

  2. Plant tulips

    Are you a lover of gardening? Plant a tulip in your garden or make use of a flower pot. These lovely flowers will definitely add more brightness and color to your home.

  3. Take a picture

    Take a picture of a beautiful tulip and post it online. Be sure to include the hashtag #tulipday to hint at what you’re celebrating.

5 Interesting Facts About Tulips

  1. Tulips are even

    Tulip flower buds are almost perfectly symmetrical to one another.

  2. Tulips don’t bloom long

    Tulips usually bloom for about three days to two weeks in spring.

  3. Tulips have many varieties

    There are over 3,000 varieties of tulips!

  4. Tulips are lily clan members

    Tulips are part of the lily family, Liliaceae.

  5. Tulips are edible

    Tulip petals can be used instead of onions in some recipes.

Why We Love Tulip Day

  1. Tulips are beautiful

    We love tulips because of their beautiful and elegant look. Tulips are lovely flowers that can brighten up any environment.

  2. Tulips have a rich history

    Tulips have a long and rich historical background. From the ‘Tulip Era’ to ‘Tulip Mania,’ they’ve woven through several cultures and times and remain relevant even today.

  3. Tulips are versatile

    Tulips are versatile and fascinating flowers. With over 3,000 varieties, these vibrant flowers never get old.

Tulip Day dates

YearDateDay
2023May 13Saturday
2024May 13Monday
2025May 13Tuesday
2026May 13Wednesday
2027May 13Thursday

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