Keukenhof Gardens, Holland~Part 2

5 Apr


Judy Wills






Last time, I wrote about the Keukenhof Gardens, in Lisse, Holland. We so thoroughly enjoyed our visits there, and want to share this beautiful place with everyone we know.


Here is some history about the tulips we found interesting from the Fluwell website:

“during World War 2, people ate tulip bulbs. The only reason for this was hunger. The Netherlands suffered a great famine in the winter of 1944-1945. Eating tulip bulbs is not something our ancestors did for fun, they did it because there was nothing else to eat.

 Many Dutchmen of certain age remember the famine and the tulip bulbs they ate. In our theme park Tulpenland, we have a lot of customers that share their memories with us. They sometimes still find it difficult to see tulip bulbs back, although they know that we use them only for flowers, not for food. Hunger is a deep emotion that is not easily forgotten.

 The Dutch famine was the result of the lost Battle of Arnhem (1944), when allied forces failed to liberate the northern provinces of the country. The northern provinces became isolated from the liberated parts of Europe. Food stocks ran out, as did fuel stocks. Then a harsh winter began. Thousands of Dutch citizens starved or froze to death.

 Due to the war situation, tulip growers had not planted tulip bulbs that year; so great amounts of tulip bulbs were stocked on farms throughout the country. During the famine authorities decided to use these stocks as food for the starving populations. The old, dry tulip bulbs were sold in grocery stores, and newspapers published recipes with tulips. The tulip bulbs were nutritious and relatively easy to cook, so that less fuel was needed.

 The tulip bulbs that people ate in the Second World War cannot be compared with modern day, fresh tulip bulbs. The war bulbs were old and dry and did not taste like fresh tulips. A fresh tulip bulb has a sweet, milky flavor that is actually not very bad. The tulip bulbs that were eaten during the war had a very bitter and dry taste instead.

 Eating tulip bulbs is not as bad as it sounds like, as long as you eat fresh tulips that were not sprayed. Unfortunately, such bulbs were not available during the last winter of WW2. It is important that this sad history is not forgotten. Dutch children are still raised with the words: you are not hungry, you only have appetite (Je hebt geen honger, je hebt trek). Real hunger makes you eat everything you can get, even old, dry tulip bulbs, as they were eaten during the Dutch famine.”



Just a side note here – there is a wonderful place to visit outside The Hague, called Madurodam. It is a miniature city, built to scale. It includes the normal things you would find in a city – churches, office buildings, and even Schiphol Airport in Amsterdam, with working airplanes. It’s a fun thing to see during the day, but miniature lights come on at night, and it’s quite the fairyland.



The family of Old Things R New wishes each of our visitors a blessed Easter. He is risen!

3 Responses to “Keukenhof Gardens, Holland~Part 2”

  1. Old Things R New April 5, 2015 at 7:57 pm #

    Judy the pictures are a visual feast! We have very little color yet here in the moutains but it is coming!!


  2. thatemily April 5, 2015 at 6:19 am #

    The tulips look absolutely stunning. Beautiful photos 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Old Things R New April 5, 2015 at 8:01 pm #

      Thanks for stopping by. We don’t have much spring color yet so I really enjoyed Judy’s post.

      Liked by 1 person

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