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The daffodils of Carlos
The daffodil comes from Spain and Portugal, where lots of them still grow in the wild. Everywhere in the world the daffodil appealed people for centuries. The Tulipomania skipped the English, they did not like the tulip at all but were enchanted by daffodils, like William Wordsworth in his beautiful poem dated 1804.
The love for the daffodil, the trade, and the bulb knowhow were spoon-fed by father Karel van der Veek. This well-known hybridizer collected daffodils, not pictures but real bulbs which he planted behind his farm. This living library contains more than 2635 unique species. Where his father preferred being on his fields, Carlos however spreads his wings and searches the whole world for daffodils. Logically his collection draws worldwide attention of garden lovers and colleagues.
Customers are attracted, as bees to honey, to the outstanding daffodils of Carlos. He is approached by The Daffodil Society and by leading mailorder companies like The White Flower Farm, John Scheepers, Colorblends and Old House Gardens from the USA and closer by by Quality Daffodils, Bramcote Bulbs and Choice Bulbs from England.
In 1992 he starts exporting daffodils. Not just bulbs, but complete packages are designed especially for customers in the warehouse at Sint Maartenszee. The packages are sold complete with clear planting instructions, so customers enjoy their daffodils for many long years.
If you meet Carlos and the word daffodil is dropped, his eyes start shining at once. Once he starts talking, and he does gladly with lots of passion, it won’t take long before you are crazy about daffodils as well.
The ultimate spring feel, seeing the first sprouts, the explosive growth from sprout to flower, that’s the most beautiful thing there is to him. Can’t they find him, surely he is in the show garden, where 600 unique and new daffodil species grow. In spring you may visit his show garden, but you can also see part of it in this YouTube movie his children created.
Whether it is the ancient ‘Seagull’ from 1893 or the last year baptized brand-new ‘Viktoria van den Busche’, he loves them all. For an amateur they may look the same, but Carlos recognizes the various species with one look. For bulb traders and growers he is a walking encyclopedia on daffodils. If Michelin stars were given to daffodil growers, Carlos at least had 3.
Don’t think this sympathetic man only grows daffodils. This busy bee invents something new all the time. He is busy collecting Crocuses, already up to 400 species. Because of the many requests of garden lovers he started a website were private gardeners can also buy the special collection of Fluwel. He gives useful planting tips and tells entertaining stories about flower bulbs. He is indeed a good writer, showing the texts he wrote about the history and future of the tulip in Fluwels Tulpenland. His next wish is a Fluwels Daffodil park in England, keep an eye on him, it will surely happen.
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