15 October 2019 – Most of the tulip bulbs sold at the Amsterdam Flower Market never flower. Research by the Amsterdam council and the Dutch association for tulip bulbs shows that the tulip bulbs sold at the Amsterdam Flower Market are a scam.
Researchers bought 1364 tulip bulbs at different stands at the famous Flower Market in the center of Amsterdam. Only 14 of the bulbs bloomed, about 1%. None of the flowering tulips resembled the picture on the package. About the same results came forward at the ‘Flower Bulbs Boulevard’ at bulb city Lisse, where the famous tulip gardens of Keukenhof are located. The results were reported to the Netherlands Authority for Consumers and Markets.
Blue tulips for sale
Dutch newspaper Het Parool already reported in April that there are many things wrong with the market. For instance, bags labeled ‘blue tulips’ are for sale, while blue tulips don’t exist.
Flower Market is a tourist trap
The Flower Market is a popular tourist attraction in Amsterdam. It is listed in all tourist guide books, though residents consider the Amsterdam Flower Market is a tourist trap. There are hardly any fresh flowers for sale anymore. Most of the stands are filled with souvenirs, wooden shoes, weed seeds, and flower bulbs.
Tulip bulbs must be planted in autumn
The bulb planting season in The Netherlands is in autumn. From September to December the bulbs are sold at garden shops and planted in the soil. The flower bulbs must be in the ground to experience the cold winter. Dutch tulips bloom in spring: end of March, April, until the beginning of May. Bulbs that are bought in spring have not experienced any cold and will likely never bloom.