The flower fields in the west of Holland are at their best in April and May. That’s when the spring bulbs, such as tulips and hyacinths are flowering. The cultivation of flower bulbs for commercial purposes started in Haarlem and the surrounding area about 400 years ago. The area between Haarlem and Leiden eventually became known as 'De bollenstreek' - the bulb district. For many years, a large part of the population earned their living from bulbs, whether in nurseries, export, or in industries that supplied the sector. The town of Lisse regarded itself as the centre of the bulb-growing area, boasted a postmark that declared: "Lisse, the centre of the bulb district". The famous flower exhibition "de Keukenhof" can be found here.
The Netherlands produce approximately nine billion flower bulbs annually. Evenly distributed, this number would allow for almost two flower bulbs for every person on the planet. The tulip remains the most popular and recognizable bulb flower. Most people think of the tulip when they think of bulb flowers. The tulip is followed in popularity by the daffodil, the gladiolus, the lily and the crocus.
I took photos of flower fields in Holland for last 7 years. It was only this year when I was really lucky with the weather as the sun was shining on the field on a stormy day. It created wonderful contrast in colors.
PENTAX K20D, f/8, 0.002 sec (1/500), ISO 100, 18 mm
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