The world’s largest and most colorful flower garden — Keukenhof — is located in Holland and it’s open for just eight weeks each year: March 22-May 13.
Someone from Longfield Gardens is always on hand to see what’s new, connect with growers and take pictures. Our bulb expert Hans Langeveld just returned, and we want to share a quick peek at what was blooming last week, along with a few facts about the show.
Spring Started Slow Then Came On Fast
As was true in much of the U.S., Holland had an unusually late spring. When Keukenhof opened the third week of March it was 40°F and there was little to see in the gardens other than some brave little crocus. But three weeks later, temperatures climbed into the 70’s and suddenly everything was back on schedule. Peak bloom is usually the last week of April. As you’ll see, that turned out to be true again this year.
The landscape of Keukenhof, with its majestic trees and waterways, was designed in 1857 as an ornamental garden for Castle Keukenhof, located nearby. Today the gardens cover 32 acres and are maintained as a showcase for Holland’s floraculture industry.
Each year the entire garden is redesigned to highlight new varieties, color trends and planting combinations. Approximately 100 growers supply the 7 million bulbs that are planted each fall in order to ensure this spectacular display of color.
During the 8 week spring season, Keukenhof hosts about 1 million visitors from more than 100 countries around the world. It’s a busy place! A new entry hall opened last year and there’s now space for 4,500 cars and 1,000 buses.
Winning Combinations From Keukenhof
Here are some of the plantings Hans thought were particularly successful. You may be seeing some of these in our future bulb collections!
One last bit of eye candy. It took some courage to combine these pink, yellow, orange and dark red flowers. But what a reward! For me, what really makes this planting work is the coral pink tulip Toronto. It’s the one in front with the slightly recurved petals and smoky blue flares. It’s definitely on my list for next fall.
By the way, we will be ready to begin taking reservations for fall bulbs in mid-May. The new and unusual varieties always sell out early, so we encourage you to have us set yours aside. There’s no charge until your bulbs are shipped next fall.
Wherever you are this spring, I hope it’s looking colorful!