28 December 2021
AMSTERDAM, Netherlands: No brightly-hued tulip garden at Amsterdam’s Dam Square on 15 January 2022 to celebrate the arrival of Dutch cut tulip season. Because of the omicron variant, The Netherlands is under lockdown until at least 14 January, forcing event organisers of National Tulip Day to cancel their mega picking garden and look for an alternative spring party.
Under normal circumstances, the third Saturday of January marks National Tulip Day when visitors at Amsterdam’s Dam Square are invited to pick their tulips for free from a purpose-built tulip garden. The goal of ‘National Tulip Day’ is to promote and support tulips. The event also highlights the importance of The Netherlands being the world’s largest exporter of tulip bulbs and tulip cut flowers. In 2017, the country forced 2.4 billion tulips into bloom and exported approximately 2.3 billion tulips bulbs.
National Tulip Day organiser Tulp Promotie Nederland (TPN) – an alliance of 500 tulip forcers and breeders – has announced an alternative spring party following the cancellation of the mega cutting garden in Amsterdam.
TPN President Arjan Smit – growing 11 million cut tulips per year in Spierdijk – says, “Because of all the extra safety measures and uncertainty surrounding the omicron variant, we think it is wiser to celebrate the new cut tulip season in a different, but no less inspiring way. Amsterdam will be still our venue of choice, so that we can once again sing along with ‘Tulips from Amsterdam’.”
The theme for this year is ‘Share Happiness’ with Andre van Duin, arguably the nation’s most loved comedian, playing an important role.
Smit says, “I reckon it was our shortest meeting ever. To the question of who we should honour with a special tulip in 2022, growers and breeders unanimously elected André van Duin as the 2022 ambassador of the event.”
According to Smit, there are many reasons to name a new tulip after the Dutch comedian. Not only will the charismatic Van Duin celebrate his 75th anniversary on 20 February, all throughout his long-life career he has adopted a positive attitude. In the Netherlands, everyone knows comedian André van Duin’ and his many iconic jokes and various short comedy sketches.
“With his extraordinary talent Van Duin brings people together regardless of age, gender, sexual orientation or ethnic background. And that’s exactly the message we want to spread with our ‘Share Happiness’ tagline. In a twist of fate, we also found out that the tulip happens to be André’s favourite flower.”
TPN will soon provide more details on the tulip name-giving ceremony