Why Does The Netherlands Send Tulips To Canada?

If you’ve had the opportunity to visit Ottawa in the spring, you know that the various parks in the Canadian capital explode with vibrant tulips all over each and every year. There's a rich and remarkably fascinating history behind this occurrence, and the Netherlands — also referred to as the tulip capital of the world — happens to play an integral role in this tradition that's been thriving for 75 years now. In gratitude for helping liberate the Netherlands during World War II in 1945, Princess Juliana presented 100,000 tulip bulbs to Canada. Since then, the tulip has been a symbol of friendship between the Netherlands and Canada. The Dutch royal family still annually presents 20,000 tulip bulbs to Canada. When Canada receives their tulips, 10,000 of them go to the garden bed at Ottawa Hospital that Princess Margriet was born at to honor her and the strengthened bond that her birth created between the Netherlands and Canada. The other 10,000 tulip buds go to a bed that honors Queen Juliana in Commissioners Park. A kind gesture of gratitude really has flourished into a wonderful ritual that no one could have ever predicted.