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Ahh the Beauty of Keukenhof…

Spring in the Netherlands means many things: newborn lambs, crops in freshly turned soil, growing daylight that extends each day by several minutes each morning and evening.

But most of all, it means tulip season. Which means the Keukenhof, in Lisse.

Actually, after two years (and three springs) here in Nederland, I’ve come to understand that ‘tulip season’ actually has two simultaneous parts. Local farmers and flower growers plant the most beautiful fields of varying colors of hyacinths, narcissus, daffodils and tulips.

I’m talking all over the western part of the country, stretching from Amsterdam south towards The Hague and beyond.

These gorgeous fields are planted with the intention that they will bloom sometime during the two-month Keukenhof season (roughly late March to mid-May each year).

Many fields are planted in such a way that some parts bloom at the beginning of the ‘tulip season’ while others bloom mid- or even late-season. They are glorious, stretching as far as the eye can see.

To say that I have driven around, stopping my car on rural roads and onto shoulders of busy highways, just to take photos of these magnificent fields, is an understatement.

I have been relentless in my pursuit of photographic evidence of such beauty, and I intend to share those photos in another post somewhere down the line.

Today we are focusing on the Keukenhof. It’s the world’s largest flower garden.

Let me repeat that: the world’s largest flower garden.

Some 70 acres (32 hectares), with two indoor flower pavilions that some people never get to because they are so wowed by the 7 MILLION bulbs planted outside.

Now I’ve toured the Keukenhof with Husband, and another time with family on a sight-seeing expedition. I get to go again next month when my parents come to visit, and I can’t wait.

It is that exquisite.

Seriously.

I’m certainly no green thumb.

I can barely manage to water a plant correctly (or not), and I do my best to give it the right amount of light/shade.

Anything short of shriveling it up to a dead carcass is considered a success, at least in my book.

Yet I don’t find a trip to the Keukenhof intimidating in the least.

Rather, it reinforces my belief that some people are meant to grow and nurture plants.

Some aren’t. I’m in the latter group.

But I truly believe that all of us can marvel at the wonders of Nature. And the Keukenhof clearly spells nature with a capital N, no doubt about that.

As we meandered through the gardens, we were struck by the sight of flowers in every conceivable hue.

(And when I say every conceivable hue, I mean it. The gradations of shades are amazing.

I even noted to my sister-in-law that a day in the Keukenhof would be paradise for any bride-to-be: no one could leave without having selected their favorite color combination and exact shades for their wedding – flowers, bridesmaid dresses, etc.)

So while I let the pictures paint the loveliness of the Keukenhof, I will just add one thought.

It dawned on me as I wandered through the shaded and sunny sections of flowers of different types and colors.

What I look forward to more than anything, is to come back by myself.

I’d spend an entire day, lounging with a journal and pen.

Who wouldn’t be inspired to write in the midst of this loveliness, this beauty?

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