Roses and lilies might be the stars of the floral world, but if there's one bloom that should be at the top of your list this Spring, it's the timeless and elegant tulip. In fact, during the 17th century, the Netherlands experienced such an increase in demand for this unique flower that the era would come to be known as Tulip Mania. The time period, occurring primarily between 1630-1637 and also known as the Dutch Golden Age, saw an increase in the price of tulips to about twenty times the norm. In fact, one of the rarest tulips at the time, the Semper Augustus, was valued at the same price as a luxury home in Amsterdam!
Although many different reasons have been attributed to this economic bubble, the most common and basic reasons for this increase in popularity was the simple beauty of this bloom. Introduced to Holland in the 1590s, the tulip was unlike any other flower the area had seen before. With its vivid colors and uniquely shaped petals, it soon became largely sought-after, earning merchants who jumped on this opportunity a profit of up to 400%.
At the end of 1637, this flower's fairy tale came to an abrupt halt when prices dropped drastically, ending the craze, and allowing tulips to once again be financially accessible by all who wished to marvel at their beauty.
Fancy? Fantastically eccentric! Fancy tulips are often boldly colored with fiery forms—equal parts pretty and edgy.
Flamboyant Parrot tulips have deeply feathered, curled or twisted petals with vibrant coloring.
This unique variety flaunts an extra-special fringe on the top of each petal.
The bulbs of these tulips sold for the equivalent of thousands of dollars each during the Dutch tulip craze of the 17th century. Their unusual markings were actually caused by a virus. Several modern, virus-free Rembrandt tulips are grown with bold and extravagant streaking.
Big, bold and beautiful, these take-your-breath-away beauties have robust blooms in wonderful colors atop tall, strong stems. French tulips are some of the most popular of all time, and with 24"+ stem lengths, they may be the tallest, most impressive you'll ever see. They "grow" even after arranged (up to 5") and "seek the light" by turning toward the sun during the day.