Monday, May 9, 2011

Istanbul Tulip Festival


ibb.gov.tr
Many people know the root of the word "tulip" comes from the Turkish word "tülbend", meaning gauze. Well, "tül" means gauze. Tülbend has more to do with the shape of the gauze, because tülbend is derived from the Persian word for turban, "dulband". Anyhoo, bulbs were wrapped in Ottoman tülbend for shipment to Europe and the rest is history. 
 
In Turkey, the tulip is seen as a symbol of abundance (probably because Europeans paid a fortune for each bulb) and a signature of the Ottoman "Lale Devri" or Tulip Era. (More creative than "golden age", don't you think?)

This April was the sixth year Istanbul hosted the festival, and there were 11.5 million bulbs planted in various parks around the city. Every bulb was domestically grown in Çumra or another one of the small towns surrounding Konya out on the Anatolian plain. (Why get tulips from Holland, when they grow in the backyard practically by themselves, right? My only real question: why was this only the sixth festival?)

So if you've seen the Keukenhof , the Chelsea Flower Show and every other garden event you can think of, try Istanbul. This festival has music, ebru (marbled paper - very bookish) and all sorts of art, plus a spectacular setting. The official website is in Turkish, but check out the pdf brochure  in English for all the breathtaking details, especially if you love flowers. Sigh. Next year.... 


 
turkishclass.com - I think. It's all over the web without proper credit.
Thank you to the photographer, whoever you are! 



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12 comments:

Sarah said...

Flower festivals are so lovely. I went to school at Hope College in Holland, Michigan, and every May they have the Tulip Festival. It's really something to walk around that little town and just see tulips everywhere, planted in beautiful color patterns. I associate tulips with the Dutch, so it's cool to know there's a Turkish connection as well!

Old Kitty said...

I never ever knew about the root (ahem!) word to tulip is turkish!! How fascinating!!! And I never knew its importance in Turkish culture too!! Wonderful!!!!

I can't open the pdf link here so will try later at home!

Take care
x

Matthew MacNish said...

Tulips are beautiful, especially when there are hundreds of them growing together.

Clarissa Draper said...

Breathtaking! Like a finely shaped gauze.

Holly Ruggiero said...

11.5 million bulbs - thems a lot of bulbs

I would love to see that one day.

Lydia K said...

I didn't know that about the word tulip! Thank you educating me about that.

LTM said...

I LOVE tulips. They were one of the main things I noticed when I was back in Indy in April. Tulips everywhere. And I love the whole gauze thing you were describing up there... LOL! UR so funny...

Have a super week~ <3

Deniz Bevan said...

Yay, the tulip festival! They have one in Ottawa as well, hosted by the Turkish Embassy.
I was looking up ebru the other day and watched some how to videos on YouTube - it's fascinating, beautiful stuff!

Jules said...

Wow,that is a lot of bulbs and ours just went out of bloom. Thought I'd forgot you again didn't you?! :)
Jules @ Trying To Get Over The Rainbow

KO: The Insect Collector said...

Ahhh, yes, please, sign me up!

Seriously, the turkish tourist board should be sending you money! You've amped my desire to visit by about 1000%

Matthew MacNish said...

I know you don't always post every day Carolyn, but I've just started that new Batrimaeus book, and it made me think of you.

So: hi!

Carolyn V said...

Wow. They are so beautiful! I love tulips.

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