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Tulips:Everything YouNeed to Know

Spring has sprung and that means it’s time for tulips! These instantly recognisable spring blooms have been a firm favourite across the world for centuries and they just never seem to go out of fashion. We’re not surprised, as tulips offer us that fabulous pop of colour we all need after the winter months. With a dazzling array of colours, styles and flower shapes you will be spoilt for choice.

Taking its cues from the perfect shape of this bloom, this flower means ‘perfect love’. This makes them the perfect bouquet to give to pretty much anyone. Whether you want to thank your mum for always being there, a bouquet for that adoring husband or even a bunch for the best friend in your life, tulips are the perfect choice.

So read on and let us tell you everything you need to know about this iconic flower!




Although we may think of the tulip as a flower of the Netherlands, did you know that this fantastic bloom was first discovered growing as a wildflower in the Himalayas in around 1055?

Over the next few hundred years, these flowers became a prized possession within the Ottoman Empire; a great dynasty that controlled much of Southeast Europe, Western Asia and Northern Africa during the 15th and 16th centuries. Amongst the elite and high society Ottomans, the tulip flower became the ultimate symbol of power and wealth. It was said that Sultans would wear this flower in their turbans, so is thought this bloom got its name from the Peruvian word for turban (probably owing to the similarity between the shape of the headwear and the flower head). It wasn’t until the 16th century that tulips came to the attention of the West when visiting diplomats to the Ottoman court would be gifted these flowers to take back home.

But how did they end up across the sea? Biologist Carolus Clusius is largely responsible for the spread of the tulip bulbs across Europe. The flowers were rare and as a result they were also very expensive - at one point a single tulip bulb reached the same price as an Amsterdam canal house! Demand was huge and very quickly a tulip craze took hold, especially across the Netherlands. The mania behind these flowers could not continue and after only three short years demand dropped and so did the prices.

Despite its turbulent history, the Netherlands still loves this flower and today they are the largest producer of tulip bulbs in the world. Unsurprisingly this bloom is also their national flower and they even celebrate a National Tulip Day which is held on the third Saturday in January and Amsterdam’s Dam Square is flooded with over 200,000 tulips – a sight we definitely want to see!



So, what does it mean to give a tulip? As some of the first flowers that appear in spring, tulips are said to be a symbol of rebirth. A bouquet of tulips would be the perfect gift for someone who is starting an exciting adventure in life, whether that’s starting a new job, moving home or going on a big journey.

But the red tulip has also been said to hold a specific meaning. It has been suggested to represent romance with links to a story reminiscent of Romeo and Juliet. The legend goes that Farhad, a lowly stone cutter, and the princess Shirin fall madly in love. Her father, not happy with the romance, demands that Farhad prove his worth by digging a giant canal. After working tirelessly for years, he completed the work but the King, not wanting his daughter to marry a commoner, sent a courtier to tell Farhad that the princess had died. On hearing the news Farhad killed himself. When Shirin heard the news, she ran to her love and seeing his body also killed herself and red tulips are said to have formed where their blood hit the ground. Folklore or not, we can get behind the love story of the tulip flower.


Whether you’re looking for pink, purple or even red flowers, one of the beautiful things when buying tulips is an array of colours to pick from. There are over 3000 different varieties and petal styles range from the traditional, neat oval blooms all the way through to double, fringed, scalloped or even open flower heads.


Red tulips

Red Tulips are the ultimate symbol of a deep and perfect love. You probably don’t need to go as far as Farhad and Shirin to declare your everlasting love for someone, but a bouquet of these blooms in a romantic red will definitely win over someone’s heart. Go for a bunch of delicate looking red parrot tulips for that extra special touch.



If you need a bouquet of flowers to say ‘I’m sorry’ then choose some white tulips. These flowers are all about forgiveness and respect. They also mean purity and innocence which makes them perfect for welcoming a new baby into the world. Keep the colour scheme simple and create a fabulous bouquet of tulips with white lisianthus and hypericum.



In delicate shades or strong vibrant pinks, the tulips represent perfect happiness, affection and good wishes. A bunch of these blooms is a perfect gift for someone who celebrates their birthday in spring. Or mix these pink blooms with some white tulips to create a dreamy bouquet that would be perfect for a new baby or even to say thank you to a best friend. Or go for some in the darker pink paired with lots of greenery to wish someone luck when starting a new job.



Ranging from lilac all the way through to a deep purple that almost looks black. A tulip in this colour represents royalty (taken from when purple dye was rare and so expensive to produce only kings and queens could afford it). Pair these blooms with plenty of greenery and some white gypsophila to let the purple colours really stand out.



As with most yellow flowers, yellow tulips represent cheerfulness and positivity. The Victorians even believed that the yellow tulip meant ‘there’s sunshine in your smile’! Give a bouquet of yellow tulips, daffodils and irises and brighten up someone’s day.



Ranging from a delicate baby blue to striking darker tones, blue tulips certainly look dramatic in the vase. Fairly new to the family, blue tulips are very unusual and for this reason they represent uniqueness – perfect if you want to send a bouquet to a friend to show them just how special they are.



If you send some orange tulips, they can portray a range of emotions. As a warm colour they symbolise sunshine and warmth, as well as conveying happiness which makes them perfect for sending to a friend to cheer up their day. Orange tulips can also be said to represent love, however for mutual respect between a married couple, perfect if you want to send an anniversary bouquet in the spring months. Pair these flowers up with some orange roses and chrysanthemum to show how much you love them.


The wonderful thing about tulips is that they are so easy to arrange in a vase. A large bouquet of these blooms bunched together can look amazing all by themselves.

However, there are two incredibly important thing to remember. Tulips like to keep moving and will twist so that they face the nearest light source. You should also be aware that once you’ve cut your blooms and placed them in the vase the tulips will continue to grow – a lot!!

To display your bouquet of Tulips, find a container that will allow the blooms to sit snugly and support the stems without being too tight a fit. Tulips are incredibly thirsty flowers once in the vase so make sure there is enough room for plenty of water.

Before putting in the vase, cut the stem of your tulip at an angle, taking about 3cm off the bottom and remove any leaves that will sit below the water line. Then quickly put them into some water to stop them drooping. Keep the flowers out of direct sunlight or near radiators and remember to add some fresh water every few days.

Now you know all about these fabulous flowers, why not send a tulip bouquet today and add some spring sunshine to someone’s day.