GardenSmart :: EPISODES :: 2018 show28
GardenSMART Newsletter Signup
 
Visit our Sponsors!
Visit our Sponsors and win.
Past Shows:

GardenSMART Episode

Show #28/5302. Keukenhof

Summary of Show

Size And Scope Of Keukenhof
Lets talk a little bit about the SIZE of the garden and the scope of it. When one walks through the entrance you can tell immediately this is a beautiful display garden. How large is it? It's thirty-five hectares. They plant, every year, seven million bulbs. And they plant them all by hand. They do it with 35 male gardeners and one woman. So, they work for this picture the whole year. It's only open for eight weeks. It started in 1950 with a few growers and exporters on a small scale and during the time it has become greater or larger. Every year this whole garden changes completely. It is not just the bulbs, it's the grass, it's pretty much all the plantings that we see.
For More Information Click here

Romance In The Flowers
Eric next wants to talk about this particular planting. It is one of the first things that one sees as they come in through the visitors center. This theme changes every year thus it's a surprise to the visitors, they don't know what they are going to experience until they enter. This year, as mentioned, the theme is ROMANCE IN THE FLOWERS and one sees two faces and a heart and with the Blue Grape Hyacinth they make an outline of the world. In this area they planted fifty thousand bulbs and new grass.
For More Information Click here

7 Little Gardens
Hans starts the tour. Every part of Keukenhof is changing every single year and there are all these wonderful little pocket gardens throughout the broader garden. We start in the middle of one of the theme gardens. It is called the Hipster Garden. There are 7 LITTLE GARDENS in the Keukenhof and every garden has another name. The Hipster Garden has beer and darts, even an axe. Eric asks, so hipsters like chopping wood? Yes. This garden they have to change every two weeks. So they replant the bulbs because then you've got the most beautiful colors.
For More Information Click here

Gardens On Mound Or Hills
Interposed with all the inspiration gardens there's a wonderful section of the garden that are MOUNDS OR HILLS, if you will, that really show off some of the bold colors that are represented here at Keukenhof. Yes it is. They have hills here and have plantings in several colors like purple, orange, white and red. They plant here bulbs to have color from the beginning or opening of the park until the end. The small varieties are already gone but the single late tulips are coming up now and they are almost the biggest tulips.
For More Information Click here

Depth And Vertical Aspect
Eric comments on one design concept that runs throughout the garden and it may be more of a PLANTING TIP and that is they've interspersed some of the really tall varietals with some of the shorter ones. This technique provides a sense of depth and a wonderful vertical aspect to each one of these plantings. And that is on purpose.
For More Information Click here

Black Tulip
There's a tremendous amount of allure around the elusive BLACK TULIP. Hans thinks this is a very impressive stand. There are a lot of varieties of tulips and families like the early, early double and botanical and this is an example of a single late tulip. The black tulip they have is called Queen Of The Night.
For More Information Click here

Lasagna Planting
A really interesting planting technique used throughout the garden is what's called "LASAGNA PLANTING" and this is a great example of it right here. Eric would like for Hans to talk us through that process? One can see here that they have planted a crocus, then an early tulip. Many have already gone over but several are left. When planting they plant first the last one, it goes in deep, they then make the ground flat, then replant the early tulips above the late tulips, again they make it flat and then they plant the crocus on top of the early tulips.
For More Information Click here

Hyacinths
Eric has one final question before we leave. Why is it that all the HYACINTHS here at Keukenhof stand up straight. In his garden they always tend to flop especially when they're fully in bloom? At home the hyacinths are too great, too large. When they grow up they're going to be heavy.
For More Information Click here

LINKS:

Show #28/5302. Keukenhof

Transcript of Show

In this Episode GardenSMART visits one of the most iconic bulb gardens in the Netherlands, if not the world, and meets with one of their gardeners to discuss bulbs, garden design and maintenance. A beautiful show and a lot to learn.

Keukenhof is one of the most handcrafted, colorful, beautiful and natural places in the world. Situated in Lisse, South Holland, Keukenhof is one of the world's largest flower gardens. With over 7 million bulbs it is one of the most popular attractions in the Netherlands and has welcomed more than 44 million visitors in the last 60 years. Keukenhof's colorful sea of 800 varieties of tulips and other spring flowers attracts visitors from around the globe who want to see the Netherlands' iconic tulip fields.

We tour the garden with Hans Barbansson and learn how he and his fellow gardeners design, plant and maintain the wonder that is Keukenhof. Eric meets Hans and thanks him for joining GardenSMART. Hans in turn welcomes Eric to Keukenhof, the most beautiful town in the world. It is amazing. Keukenhof has got to be one of the most impressive bulb gardens, if you will, anywhere that one could ever see. A lot of people from all over the world come and visit for this showing of the bulbs and what one can do with them. They come to be astonished and amazed for the colors.

Lets talk a little bit about the SIZE of the garden and the scope of it. When one walks through the entrance you can tell immediately this is a beautiful display garden. How large is it? It's thirty-five hectares. They plant, every year, seven million bulbs. And they plant them all by hand. They do it with 35 male gardeners and one woman. So, they work for this picture the whole year. It's only open for eight weeks. It started in 1950 with a few growers and exporters on a small scale and during the time it has become greater or larger. Every year this whole garden changes completely. It is not just the bulbs, it's the grass, it's pretty much all the plantings that we see. Everything goes out and every year they have a new design. They have a garden architect and he makes the drawings and every year there is a theme. This year, for instance, it is Romance In The Flowers. Last year it was Russian and before it was America. Every year they plant 7 million bulbs. The old bulbs are taken out and thrown away because they are going for the best quality from the varieties. How many months does it take to plant 7 million bulbs? They start at the end of September and plant until Christmas. At that time the 7 million bulbs are in the ground. Eric asks at the point in which the bulbs are planted, the rest of your season is the maintenance of the garden. Is that correct? Yes. It takes five to dig it up. The whole garden at that point is empty. They then fix the soil, then let the bulbs rest to allow the natural composting process, breaking down the organic matter so the soil is ready to then be replanted every September.

1 hectare = 2.47105 acres

Eric next wants to talk about this particular planting. It is one of the first things that one sees as they come in through the visitors center. This theme changes every year thus it's a surprise to the visitors, they don't know what they are going to experience until they enter. This year, as mentioned, the theme is ROMANCE IN THE FLOWERS and one sees two faces and a heart and with the Blue Grape Hyacinth they make an outline of the world. In this area they planted fifty thousand bulbs and new grass. And, it's wonderful.

Keukenhof is an international destination and hundreds of thousands of people come through every year. In fact, more than a million will visit in the 7 weeks they're open this year. Eric is impressed, it's amazing, it's very busy. And Hans is a busy man indeed. Yes, but not only him but his other colleagues as well. Eric can't wait to see the garden this year.

Hans starts the tour. Every part of Keukenhof is changing every single year and there are all these wonderful little pocket gardens throughout the broader garden. We start in the middle of one of the theme gardens. It is called the Hipster Garden. There are 7 LITTLE GARDENS in the Keukenhof and every garden has another name. The Hipster Garden has beer and darts, even an axe. Eric asks, so hipsters like chopping wood? Yes. This garden they have to change every two weeks. So they replant the bulbs because then you've got the most beautiful colors. Otherwise the bulbs flower for only for two or three weeks then it goes. So they replant this every two weeks with new flowers. Eric inquires, so you have a greenhouse facility where you have basically replacements for all the bulbs that are in every one of these displays? Yes. The bulbs come from a breeder.

The initial planting in the fall, those are all the bulbs that go directly in the ground but then multiple times throughout the season you are basically pulling out the ones that are faded and then adding new plants? Yes. But only in the small gardens do they replace. In the full ground what they plant in autumn, it comes out in spring and it's only for one time. There they plant in several layers and a lot of varieties. They plant early varieties, middle flower varieties and late varieties. These are bulb flowers so you don't find roses or other kinds of flowers that flower in summer. It is only for the spring. This looks amazing. But they have six other display or inspiration gardens, let's look at more of those.

The next is the Delft Blue Garden. Delft pottery or Delftware, also know as Delft Blue is blue and white pottery made in and around Delft in the Netherlands. This tin-glazed pottery is from the 16th century. They have planted this garden with blue hyacinths with blue grape and white daffodils, then white tulips. Delft blue is blue and white so they plant here only blue and white bulb flowers. One of the purposes of the inspiration gardens is of course, to show home gardeners what kinds of things they can do on their own. At your home you can make an area where you plant blue and white.

Another inspiration garden is named the Rebel Garden. In it one can plant like a rebel, all the colors you want, you can do what you want. They also have a health garden. There they've planted little vegetables and flowers. They have a tea garden with a glass house. There you can buy some coffee or tea. And there they have other colors for inspiration. So with bulbs you can do everything. They have small bulbs, big bulbs, you can plant them, you can mix them. Here you see the result. Eric agrees, absolutely. There is something so whimsical about the way color is used in this garden. It's fantastic. He also noticed a wonderful little beach garden. Yes, they have a beach garden, in there you'll see the beach colors like orange and red and pink and you'll see sand and with the palms. Every garden has another theme but you can do it at home and that's why they call them also the inspiration gardens. You will see a lot of people coming here to make pictures, millions of pictures in 7 weeks. It always amazes us.

Interposed with all the inspiration gardens there's a wonderful section of the garden that are MOUNDS OR HILLS, if you will, that really show off some of the bold colors that are represented here at Keukenhof. Yes it is. They have hills here and have plantings in several colors like purple, orange, white and red. They plant here bulbs to have color from the beginning or opening of the park until the end. The small varieties are already gone but the single late tulips are coming up now and they are almost the biggest tulips. The tallest one here is a good example. These are bulbs delivered by a company that specializes in making bulbs for communities or towns to plant their bulbs beside the highway or the roads in the village so people will see in spring, when they come out of a dark winter, they see the most beautiful colors. They know they are now going to be healthy and happy and know spring is beginning.

Eric comments on one design concept that runs throughout the garden and it may be more of a PLANTING TIP and that is they've interspersed some of the really tall varietals with some of the shorter ones. This technique provides a sense of depth and a wonderful vertical aspect to each one of these plantings. And that is on purpose. There are early tulips and they are going to be low, they flowered the end of March. They have already gone and you then have the mid tulips, they are going to be a little higher and will flower until the end of April and now the latest, the single late tulips. They are also a family and are coming now. They flower until the end of closing time at the park. So they have color and flowers the whole season and that's the meaning of these hills. They plant it so they will have color for eight weeks. Otherwise when you plant a single variety you have color for three weeks and then it's gone and now they have eight weeks of color.

On some of the other hills we see a mixtures of tulips. One could buy these mixtures as a set, it's a blend of different colors. And they look wonderful. One can buy the sets in the garden center, you can see the varieties in the mixture so you can plant it at home.

There's a tremendous amount of allure around the elusive BLACK TULIP. Hans thinks this is a very impressive stand. There are a lot of varieties of tulips and families like the early, early double and botanical and this is an example of a single late tulip. The black tulip they have is called Queen Of The Night. You can see it is almost black but black is no color so it is very difficult to make a black tulip so they use a very, very deep purple but they keep the name Queen Of The Night and this is an example of a single late tulip.

Nearby is an example of the tulip inspired by the lily family. They have a lot of families of tulips. This garden really shows off the range and diversity that one can have with tulips. Eric loves the lily flower tulips, you just get a whole different kind of texture to it, the really intense pink and that juxtaposed with the white and pink splash petals. It's really, really nice.

A really interesting planting technique used throughout the garden is what's called "LASAGNA PLANTING" and this is a great example of it right here. Eric would like for Hans to talk us through that process? One can see here that they have planted a crocus, then an early tulip. Many have already gone over but several are left. When planting they plant first the last one, it goes in deep, they then make the ground flat, then replant the early tulips above the late tulips, again they make it flat and then they plant the crocus on top of the early tulips. It goes like that so the end of March they have the color of the blue and purple crocus, then half of April it was an orange color tulip but they are already gone and now it's a yellow color so they have three times color on the same area. So again they have six, seven weeks of color in the garden and that is what they want because the people want to see colors. Eric thinks it's a fantastic method and can be used in ground or in container plants. This method provides two months of color from bulbs instead of what otherwise might have been maybe 14 days or so. That's true one can plant them in cans, in baskets and you can do it at home. It's a great tip. Try it and you can see what is coming, it is always a pleasure to see another color coming from the layer you planted in autumn.

One of Eric's favorite parts of the garden is the Walk Of Fame. These are more featured groups of tulips that are named after famous people or particularly extraordinary tulips. Hans shows us an example from the variety Giant Orange Sunrise. This is the largest tulip that they have. He picks one so we can see how large it is. It's amazing. And very, very nice. There are a lot of famous tulips in the Walk Of Fame. For instance, Madonna, it's a white one, there's a purple plant, they have Mickey Mouse, yellow with red, a lot of different varieties. They're all beautiful.

Eric has one final question before we leave. Why is it that all the HYACINTHS here at Keukenhof stand up straight. In his garden they always tend to flop especially when they're fully in bloom? At home the hyacinths are too great, too large. When they grow up they're going to be heavy. But Hans has a trick. He takes an iron pin but you could also take an old bicycle wheel and break the spokes out and have the same pin. They keep them straight up by stuffing the pin in the top of the plant at the flower, then run it down through the stem. It will then stand straight up. When you don't do that they will fall over, then it typically rots in two days. Of course the customer is disappointed. But they keep them straight and by doing that you keep them one week or ten days longer and looking fresh. And that's the trick that they use at Keukenhof. They do it to almost all the hyacinths and that is why you see they are straight. That's an outstanding tip.

Today we strolled through acres of perfectly manicured gardens and discussed what it takes to keep this beautiful public place in top condition. Eric thanks Hans for sharing the day with us and sharing all of his knowledge. Keukenhof is a beautiful and amazing place. Hans thanks Eric and GardenSMART for coming to visit. It was a pleasure.

LINKS:

Top


   
 
FEATURED ARTICLE
GardenSMART Featured Article

By Karen Weir-Jimerson, Costa Farms, Photographs courtesy of Costa Farms

A Norfolk Island pine looks like a Christmas tree in miniature, so many people use these floor and tabletop plants as holiday trees. An interesting article, click here to read.


  Click here to sign up for our monthly NEWSLETTER packed with great articles and helpful tips for your home, garden and pets!  
   
   
 
   
   
Copyright © 1998-2012 GSPC. All Rights Reserved.