It is October and planting season in the Dutch flower bulb region. One ‘bollenjongen’ sees it as a new start on the way to spring, for another spring is still far away because of the rain in autumn.
Johan is with Daan who can finally get his full boxes of bulbs out of the shed to start planting. Daan says that he almost had been an aviator, but that he missed the bulbs so much that he chose to join his parents' company. When loading the boxes on a cart, Daan has to take cover when Johan lends him a hand.
Images from the early 1950s show that the tulips used to be planted by hand, piece by piece. A huge difference with the four million tulips that Daan is planting today on a field of three hectares.
It is not self-evident that Daan will take over the company from his parents, his father Patrick explains: “It takes seven or eight years before you have mastered this profession. And Daan really has to prove himself.”
The ‘bollenjongens’ were asked how many bulbs go into the ground in the Bulb Region each year. And that question turns out to be a lot easier than the answer.
The tulip and hyacinth bulbs that are now planted into the ground will be sold at the end of the season. But the growers also need new bulbs for the next season. How do they get those bulbs? For a tulip this is a completely different process than for a hyacinth. A hyacinth requires a lot more attention. Martijn shows how growers produce new hyacinth bulbs.
Stan is also busy with hyacinths, he fills millions of pots with bulbs in autumn so we have spring flowers indoors in the winter. And filling those jars is all manual work.
Finally, the ‘bollenjongens’ tell us what their favorite flower is.