Billion Dollar Bulbs: Tulips From the Ottoman Empire to Today with Alette Fleischer

Billion Dollar Bulbs: Tulips From the Ottoman Empire to Today with Alette Fleischer


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From its humble origins in the Caucasus Mountains over 1000 years ago, we will follow the Tulip’s path via the Ottoman Turkish tulipomania to Holland’s billion-dollar tulip industry today. Join an expert to learn how the magical charm of the tulip has ruined the fortunes of sultans and bulb speculators while its beauty, color, and form have captured our gaze for centuries.

The tulip industry in Holland is an important part of the Dutch economy, bringing in huge revenues along with millions of visitors every spring who come to see the amazing colors of the flower fields. Together we will trace the origins of this mighty economic force, from the courts of Ottoman sultans to the bulb’s arrival in the Netherlands. We will follow the fame and fortune of this flower through the nineteenth century and see how painters, potters, and other artisans captured its delicate form.

We will delve into the flower industry of today, to learn about the new varieties of tulips on display each year at the Keukenhof Garden festival. Not open to visitors this year, we will take a look virtually at this special garden. We will see how new hybrids are developed each year yielding ever more beautiful exemplars of the millennial bud.

Led by an expert on garden history, Alette Fleischer, this interactive seminar will bring you closer to the tulip; the flower, and the bulb. Designed to inform curiosity as well as future travels, participants will come away with increased knowledge about 1000 years of tulip history and the place of the tulip in our society today. 

Amsterdam-born Alette Fleischer has a degree in Art History and a Ph.D. in 17th Dutch History, focusing on gardens, science, and technology. She has curated several exhibitions, publishes articles, presents lectures, and a proud Context Expert. For Context Travel, Alette has led the Rijksmuseum tours many times. Motto: staying curious is key to being a good historian.

This conversation is suitable for all ages

90 minutes, including a 30 minute Q&A.

Customer Reviews

Based on 2 reviews
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L
L.C.
Tulips: Much more than Pretty

This was so very interesting, I had no idea of the incredible and somewhat bizarre history of tulips!! Dr. Fleischer was a wonderful guide, very thorough, organized, knowledgable, and delightfully enthusiastic, which made the time fly. So much great insight to something I knew nothing about! Mix of lecture, video, gorgeous photography, beautiful paintings and drawings, and graphics made for a dynamic presentation. Thank you so much!

C
C.

Guest did not leave comment

Customer Reviews

Based on 2 reviews
50%
(1)
50%
(1)
0%
(0)
0%
(0)
0%
(0)
L
L.C.
Tulips: Much more than Pretty

This was so very interesting, I had no idea of the incredible and somewhat bizarre history of tulips!! Dr. Fleischer was a wonderful guide, very thorough, organized, knowledgable, and delightfully enthusiastic, which made the time fly. So much great insight to something I knew nothing about! Mix of lecture, video, gorgeous photography, beautiful paintings and drawings, and graphics made for a dynamic presentation. Thank you so much!

C
C.

Guest did not leave comment