Published February 28th, 2012
Held in the Netherlands every ten years since 1960, Floriade 2012 opens April 5 in in North Limburg (once the Duchy of Limburg). Set in an expansive park in Venlo with the many pavilions separated by gardens and woods, the world horticultural expo runs through October 7. The flower fields at Keukenhof, located outside Lisse between Amsterdam and the Hague, are open starting March 22. A hunting area in the 15th century, the imposing castle and gardens at Kekenhoff have been host to an open flower exhibition since 1949. Seven million flower bulbs are planted annually in the park, usually at its peak in mid-April.
Presented in an oversize deluxe hardcover, The Tulip Anthology, Ron van Dongen’s lush color portraits of dozens of species of exotic tulips (which he also grows), makes an excellent companion to the Floriade or gift for any flower lover, offered at $20 off the $60 retail price. Anna Pavord pens the introduction, exploring the bloom’s rich cultural history.
Subtitled, “The Story of the World’s Most Coveted Flower and the Extraordinary Passion It Aroused”, Tulipomania traces the story of the tulip from its origins on the Turkish steppes to an absurdly coveted object in Europe, and its key role in the financial follies of 17th-century Holland. It’s Essential Reading for cruises on the Waterways of Belgium and Holland.