Substantial increase flower bulb growing since 1980

The flower bulb cultivation area has increased by nearly 75 percent over the past 35 years. Most flower bulbs are still grown in the province of North Holland, but cultivation is spreading across the entire country. Cultivation areas in the provinces of Drenthe, Flevoland and Overijssel have expanded considerably. The most commonly cultivated flower bulb is the tulip. According to Statistics Netherlands (CBS), tulips are grown on almost half of all flower bulb fields.

Flowerbulb cultivation, 2015

Substantial expansion since 1980

The agricultural area used for bulb growing has increased by 10.5 thousand ha (74 percent) during the period 1980-2015. The area expanded rapidly between 1990 and 2000, by more than 6,000 ha. In the period thereafter the total area was expanded by 2,300 ha. With nearly 25 thousand ha, the bulb cultivation area reached a new record in 2015.

Flower bulb cultivation area
Flower bulb cultivation area
 GladioliHyacinthsLiliesDaffodilsTulipsOther
198023848181062151963302194
198123498071166154463862137
198221508561366153761542126
198320008581521149560112280
198420899101593150560022459
198519379541533158865882456
1986221910001538164267652396
1987248810051760159871192462
1988220610322018162271102432
1989228010012296171770162388
199020389762413170968282354
199122059442464161069832363
199220578812724147171512414
199318109102959136873072477
199418579203114132674662423
199518469803298140580312527
1996156910673289147387472505
1997168010993407153293932554
19981903118438311589100502798
19992027115845031769100993159
2000164011305070184097003130
20011450117049501880100503120
20021510119050702020105603870
20031280119049402030110204080
20041350114045401790110203680
20051380126043201760105503720
20061310131048901880103603760
20071390133050101770107403420
20081170138049701970113903450
20091120139042701880117303170
20101120138046801800114002970
20111170145050801810118602760
20121110145050901780112502810
20131110143048901760113502750
20141000148052201680114402770
2015*930148058401680121602750

Expansion across the country

North Holland plays a dominant part in bulb cultivation and the total bulb field area in this province has expanded over the past 35 years. Bulb fields around the municipality of Den Helder, for example, increased by 3,100 ha and in the region of West Friesland by 695 ha. Bulb cultivation is spreading across the Netherlands. In the Bollenstreek, bulb cultivation fell by 10 percent (240 ha). In the same period it increased in the province of Drenthe from 25 to more than 1,600 ha and in the province of Overijssel from 15 to more than 900 ha. In the province of Flevoland, the flower bulb cultivation area grew by 870 ha, covering an area in excess of 2 thousand ha in 2015.

Flower bulb cultivation area in various agricultural regions, 2015
Flower bulb cultivation area in various agricultural regions, 2015
 OtherGladioliHyacinthsDaffodilsLiliesTulips
Noord-Limburg9318501586521
Bollenstreek3916053646078740
Noordoostelijke Polder641122456881699
Wieringen and Wieringermeer777152172364081668
West-Friesland and surrounding area188282983721
Texel and Land van Zijpe7611085738515482013

Tulip bulbs in West Friesland

In 2015 too, the tulip was the most commonly grown bulb in the Netherlands. Tulips are grown on almost half of flower bulb fields (covering more than 12 thousand ha). Nearly one-third of these fields are located in West Friesland and the surrounding area. Apart from tulips, daffodils and lilies are also grown on a large scale in the Netherlands.

Flower bulb exports, 2015
Flower bulb exports, 2015
 Series 0
Belgium25.9
Canada27.3
Mexico27.9
Vietnam33.8
France39.1
Japan42.2
United Kingdom69.2
China (People"s Republic)73.4
United States of America109
Germany118.6

Exports

The value of flower bulb exports has risen by around 7 percent to approximately 900 million euros between 2010 and 2015. Bulb exports to non-EU countries rose more rapidly (by more than 10 percent) in this period than to non-EU countries (around 3 percent). Germany is the biggest market for the Netherlands. Last year, Germany bought bulbs worth more than 118 million euros from the Netherlands. With an export value of just over 109 million euros, the United States is the second biggest market.