The Mockingbird

Sweeping Changes

with 12 comments

Tulipa (commonly called Tulip) is a genus of about 100 species of bulbous flowering plants in the family Liliaceae. The native range of the species include southern Europe, north Africa, and Asia from Anatolia and Iran in the east to northeast of China. The centre of diversity of the genus is in the Pamir and Hindu Kush mountains and the steppes of Kazakhstan. A number of species and many hybrid cultivars are grown in gardens, used as pot plants or as fresh cut flowers.

The species are perennials from bulbs, the tunicate bulbs are often produced on the ends of stolons and covered with glabrous to variously hairy papery coverings. The species include short low growing plants to tall upright plants, growing from 10 to 70 centimeters (4–27 in) tall. Plants with typically 2 to 6 leaves, with some species having up to 12 leaves. The cauline foliage is strap-shaped, waxy-coated, usually light to medium green and alternately arranged. The blades are somewhat fleshy and linear to oblong in shape.

The large flowers are produced on scapes or subscapose stems normally lacking bracts. The stems have no leaves to a few leaves, with large species having some leaves and smaller species have none. Typically species have one flower per stem but a few species have up to four flowers. The colorful and attractive cup shaped flowers have three petals and three sepals, which are most often termed tepals because they are nearly identical. The six petaloid tepals are often marked near the bases with darker markings.

The flowers have six basifixed, distinct stamens with filaments shorter than the tepals and the stigmas are districtly 3-lobed. The ovaries are superior with three chambers. The 3 angled fruits are leathery textured capsules, ellipsoid to subglobose in shape, containing numerous flat disc-shaped seeds in two rows per locule.

Although tulips are associated with Holland, both the flower and its name originated in the Ottoman Empire. The tulip is actually not a Dutch flower as many people tend to believe. The tulip, or “Lale” as it is called in Turkey, is a flower indigenous to Iran, Afghanistan, Turkey and other parts of Central Asia.

A Dutch ambassador in Turkey in the 16th century, who was also a great floral enthusiast, Ogier Ghiselin de Busbecq, got their very names because of their Persian origins. Tulips were brought to Europe in the 16th century; the word tulip, which earlier in English appeared in such forms as tulipa or tulipant, entered the language by way of French tulipe and its obsolete form tulipan or by way of Modern Latin tulīpa, from Ottoman Turkish tülbend, “muslin, gauze.” (The English word turban, first recorded in English in the 16th century, can also be traced to Ottoman Turkish tülbend.) The Turkish word for gauze, with which turbans can be wrapped, seems to have been used for the flower because a fully opened tulip was thought to resemble a turban.

Written by halejon

April 11, 2008 at 6:18 am

Posted in Seriousness

12 Responses

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  1. Wow, you really went there. I’m…impressed?


    April 11, 2008 at 6:19 am

  2. You think I’m kidding.

    I was about to post this frustrated rant about how one run games are luck and the team does not really have problems with RISP and the win good team/lose to bad team thing is vastly overstated and first week blah blah but it was so fucking boring and just repressing the fact I feel like drowning a sack of kittens or something. Unreal…


    April 11, 2008 at 2:30 am

  3. Seriously, and here I thought you were only messing around…who knew the tulip originated in the Ottoman Empire?

    The More You Know…

    Navin Vaswani

    April 11, 2008 at 2:30 am

  4. I see the time has been corrected. Now it looks like I posted that from the future…


    April 11, 2008 at 2:39 am

  5. Sweet! Can you warn me about the next series I should steer clear from?

    I fixed a few options when I was switching the tagline of the blog to “All Tulips, All the Time”, but I don’t think it actually shows up anywhere…


    April 11, 2008 at 2:42 am

  6. Amazing. The tulip-tential is off the charts.

    Tulip blogroll:

    All you Tulips are Belong to Rios, Tao Of Tulips, Tuliprunner On First, Drunk Tulip Handlers, Mop Up Tulip.

    I’m entertained.

    lloyd the ghostrunner

    April 11, 2008 at 4:10 am

  7. Just tell me you wrote this in the pressbox, and somebody was looking over your shoulder in complete disbelief.


    April 11, 2008 at 9:44 am

  8. You might also have noted that many Dutch avoided starvation during the latter stages of WWII by eating tulip bulbs after the retreating Wehrmacht cut off food supplies.

    Just one more wonderful factoid about the tulip.

    johnny was

    April 11, 2008 at 12:00 pm

  9. I can’t wait to see the Pitch f/x stats on how straight the stems of various tulips grow as compared to their colour and bloomage (is that a word?).


    April 11, 2008 at 12:16 pm

  10. so, I thought someone had been messing with my RSS aggregator- where, incidentally, “All Tulips, All the Time” does show up.



    April 11, 2008 at 2:15 pm

  11. “Just tell me you wrote this in the pressbox, and somebody was looking over your shoulder in complete disbelief.”

    I actually started working on it in the 11th because I just couldn’t take it any more. I don’t think anybody saw me sadly, but snappy the turtle was right next to me and going apoplectic. Well, at least compared to the rest of the crowd up there who looked like they couldn’t care less all series.


    April 11, 2008 at 3:38 pm

  12. Hey, you know what’s better than roses on a piano? Tulips on an organ.

    Hey-O! We’ve been waiting 20 years to use that Truly Tasteless Joke again!

    Tao of Stieb

    April 11, 2008 at 4:18 pm

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