What is tulip topping?
Tulips only bloom for a short period of time. In the spring, growers remove the top of the flower: this is referred to as tulip topping. But how is this done?
Why are tulips topped?
The flowers are not actually important to growers. All they are interested in are the bulbs. The thicker the tulip bulb, the more money it raises. That is why blooming tulips are topped.
Growers plant bulbs in October and allow them to bloom in spring. They then pass through each row to inspect the tulips. This involves checking them all and removing incorrect tulip species and tulips suffering from diseases.
The eventual sale
Once they have been approved, the tulips are topped; this means cutting the flower from the stem. This is done because flowers actually consume a lot of food, and this food is needed to grow the bulb.
The more food a bulb receives, the bigger it gets. The larger bulbs are sold to garden centres and other growers. They then use them to cultivate tulips, which are sold as cut flowers; exactly like the ones in your home!