Here’s another Monday, and many of you might be feeling the “blues”. Hope this post helps you eliminate some of those. You must have guessed the place which I am about to refer to, by now. However, tarry a little, the item displayed here might carry a little surprise for you..
New Delhi, the Capital of India. Unofficially, it’s known as “Dilwalon ka Sheher” (City of Big-Hearted people) or A City of Cities among many other nicknames. Delhi has a distinct culture of it’s own, a perfect coexistence of the traditional and the cosmopolitan. Did I mention that Delhi is also unofficially the Food Capital of India? Almost every traditional delicacy belonging to every state of India can be had to the heart’s content in Delhi. Plus, nothing ever can beat the variety and depth of street food options available in Delhi.
I am sure the Tulips must have given you a small shock. After all, tulips are closely related to the Netherlands and not India.
The gardens shown here are the Mughal Gardens, a part of the Rashtrapati Bhawan (the residence of the President of India). The Gardens usually are thrown open to the public during the middle of February to the middle of March, every year.
It’s easy to broadly identify the flowers as tulips because of the signature singular curvaceous and colourful flower supported by a stout stem. This time Google made my work comparatively easier by throwing up three closely related options, one of which might be the scientific name of the flower shown above.
- Tulipa gesneriana
- Tulipa fosteriana
- Tulipa gabriella
There are a few orange marigolds (Scientific Name: Calendula officinalis) as well. More about those and other flowers will be shown later on.
Do you know the actual name of these tulips? Do let me know in the comments below so that the same can be updated.
Since we are discussing about Tulips, we must discuss a bit about the Netherlands and a bizarre phenomenon which occurred there back in the Seventeenth Century CE, all thanks to the humble yet beautiful Tulip.
TULIP MANIA (elucidated in an ultra-simplistic form):
- Tulips are largely associated with the Netherlands, though they are actually native to Turkey and Central Asia
- Tulips arrived in Europe in circa 1500 CE and quickly became an aspirational commodity of the rich and the affluent section
- In 1634 CE in the Netherlands, a mad rush began where people from every section of the society started ignoring the local industries and got busy with Tulip trade.
- At that point in time, a single tulip bulb could fetch upto 5,500 Florins (1 Florin is pegged at $150) !! So, just by selling 1 bulb of tulip, one could earn close to a Million Dollars.
- Several Stock Exchanges in Amsterdam and Rotterdam became operational due to the skyrocketing demand of tulips
- People started borrowing money and investing in tulip bulbs – the bulbs themselves taking up several months to bloom properly
- This created a Tulip Bubble back then in 1637 CE, which burst all of a sudden as most economic bubbles do. Tulips are, after all, not real money. And leverage accumulated can sustain only upto a point if not de-levered through repayment in real currency.
- Think about this: Almost everybody in the market has exhausted the money due to borrowing and buying tulips, and suddenly, the market is full of tulips or tulip stocks, but nobody has the money to buy the tulips. And yes, every borrower is under severe debt as well, which needs to be repaid. And due to non-repayment of dues from the borrowers, the banks or money lenders themselves are strapped of cash.
- This entire phenomenon is called the Tulip Mania, and is perhaps, the World’s First Stock Market Crash and Recession. (Does it sound similar to the 2008 Sub-Prime Crisis?)
So much of a devastating financial turmoil and storm over the allure of these simple and humble Tulips..!! On hindsight, maybe this beauty is worth it, don’t you think?
Today, Tulips are grown in the World’s Largest flowering garden – the Keukenhof in the Netherlands among many other places in the World.
However the World’s Largest Tulip Garden, from May 2020 onwards, is not in the Netherlands, but in India. Yes, India..!! India threw open the World’s Largest Tulip Gardens on 14 May 2020 in Uttarakhand State, high atop the Ice covered Himalayan Mountains.
Come, explore the lush picturesque gardens of Tulips in India, nestled amidst the tall icy Himalayan Mountains as you learn more of the Tulips (and perhaps, the mania as well..!!) by sipping some of the finest Indian teas..
The picture was taken in February 2015 CE
Lenovo A6000+ Mobile Phone Camera
Hope you liked these majestic Tulips and are intrigued by them.
Flowers, like these, are among the many gifts of nature which can help de-stress one to some extent. These are the little things one can pause, look and appreciate while traveling to far off places in search of the biggies.
Looking forward to interacting more with you and “Make Mondays un-mundane”..
© Abirbhav Mukherjee. All the pictures / videos posted in this article are my own unless otherwise mentioned.