There was a time in seventeenth century Holland when the tulip was a hot commodity. The most sought-after tulips suffered from a virus that broke the colors into streaks. Eventually, a whole speculative trade came into existence in which people who bought the bulbs never saw and never possessed them. Traders sold bulbs from catalog drawings like those presented here. Tulip fever reached its height in the winter of 1636 when a single bulb traded as many as ten times in a day. One bulb might sell for as much as a grand house in Amsterdam. Then abruptly in February, there came a day when traders just stayed home. The bubble had burst. Fortunes had been made and lost. Today tulips are a common garden flower seen in spring everywhere. But once they were treasure!

My new book, Timeless Tulips, Dark Diamonds, has half of the story take place during this fascinating time. https://amzn.to/2WnlqZX

Buy historic bulbs for your garden: https://oldhousegardens.com/



Filed under gardening

8 responses to “TULIP FEVER

  1. Tulips are a big deal in my little school yard garden. I have had to fend off moose, lawn mowers, and covetous pickers to keep enjoying their beauty. Sturdy red is what I’ve planted.


  2. What a gorgeous peppermint tulip!


  3. reanolanmartin

    So interesting! Can’t wait to read it!


  4. Susan Bernhardt

    So interesting about tulips. I highly recommend reading Ellis’ latest novel, TIMELESS TULIPS, DARK DIAMONDS: A GHOST STORY not only to read an extraordinary story, but to learn about the coveted tulip market in the 1600s.


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