Netherlands – Windmills and Tulips

 

Nederland-2 Recently, I joined up with a friend to visit Netherlands and participate in a photo workshop there. The leader of our workshop was Bryan Peterson who takes a photo group to Netherlands annually.  Since this was my first visit to Holland, I couldn’t wait to see windmills and tulips.

Holland has many windmills for such a small country. Historically, they have been used for many purposes: for drainage of their fields, for milling corn and as industrial mills. But I was quite surprised at the good condition of the windmills. Some are still working.

Purple Tulips
Purple Tulips

Bryan was able to find tulip fields in bloom and persuaded the owners to let us photographers get out there and photograph. One owner was so gracious that she provided tea and coffee to our group.  Nice people, those Dutch! Below is a photo of the farmer directing us to the owners house to secure permission to photograph.

Tulip Farmer
Tulip Farmer

I expected tulip fields every where you turn at this time of year. But, in fact, you have to search a little bit. We found out that tulips exhaust the soil and any one field can only be planted with tulips once in every five years.

For the field blooms,  bulbs were planted in late October and early November. Tulips for cut flowers are grown in greenhouses so that the farmers can control the storage temperature from the time the bulbs are harvested in the late summer until they are sold.

Tulip Farm and White Horse
Tulip Farm and White Horse

More than three billion tulips are grown each year and two-thirds of the vibrant blooms are exported, mostly to the U.S. and Germany. (DailyMail.com)

Red Tulip Stands Up
Red Tulip Stands Up Above the Rest

 

Wherever there are tulip fields can sheep be far away?

Sheep
Sheep

 

One of the best places we visited on the first day was a wonderful windmill with a reflection in the water.

Windmills and Buttercups
Windmills and Buttercups

 

Next blog post will be focused on our visit to the city of Amsterdam. Thanks for visiting.