The history of the Tulip

The Tulip was first discovered by Europeans some 400 years ago in Turkey and parts of Asia. It was found in both short and long stemmed species.
Carolus Clusius, a famous botanist in those days, was probably the first man who imported and introduced the Tulip to the botanical gardens at Leiden, Holland. It was described as a very rare flower and soon afterwards the Tulip began to appear in royal gardens of the various European Kings and Emperors.

The Tulip which was a measure in gold at that time was sold by the Azen. Gradually a lively speculative trade in Tulips was developed; the so-called "Tulip-Craze". Tulips had been traded for large amounts of money, wine, crops, houses and other valuable assets. In 1637, the wild speculation became of such serious concern, that the Dutch Governments had to intervene and declare all transactions to be illegal.

For many gamblers, it was a tragic move, but on the other hand, it produced widespread popularity for the Tulip. Stories about the "Tulip Craze" appeared in many European journals, which were the means of publicity then, just as the newspaper is today.
So many varieties and strains have been developed down through history by crossing and hybridizing that today we can classify them in groups or strains for simplicity.

Botanical Tulips

Some species of Botanical Tulips are the original wild, short growing Tulips, but are commercially grown in Holland today. Through crossing and hybridizing, many varieties have been developed and classified under the group "Botanical Tulips", Greigii, Kaufmanniana, and Fosteriana form the three main groups. 'Red Emperor' belongs to this category and is probably the best known variety. Botanical Tulips are most interesting; they are the first Tulips to bloom in early spring. Their bright, solid and two-tone colors can be seen from a distance. Most varieties grow low and have very sturdy foliage. The Greigii varieties have dotted or striped leaves which are attractive to the eye even before they bloom.

The official classification
of the Tulip is as follows:

Single Early Tulips

Double Early Tulips

Triumph Tulips
Chiefly the result of hybridization between Single Early and Late-flowering Tulips.

Darwin Hybrid Tulips
Chiefly the result of hybridization between Darwin Tulips and Fosteriana Tulips.

Single Late Tulips
(Darwin Tulips)

This Class includes Darwin Tulips and Cottage Tulips.

Lily-Flowered Tulips
Flowers with pointed reflexed petals.

Fringed Tulips
Tulips whose petals are edged with crystal-shaped fringes.

Viridiflora Tulips
Tulips with greenish flames in the flowers.

Parrot Tulips
Tulips with laciniate flowers, generally late-flowering.

Double Late Tulips
(Peony Flowered Tulips)

Kaufmanniana Tulips
Very early flowering, sometimes with mottled foliage.

Fosteriana Tulips
Large, early flowering, some cultivars with mottled or striped foliage.

Greigii Tulips
Always with mottled or striped foliage, flowering later than Kaufmanniana.

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