This Tulip proves to us all that old does not mean ugly. Philippe de Comines has been a part of the flower bulb world since 1891! She has not been around commercially for years, though.
A few years back I got some of her flower bulbs from mister Zweeris. Mister Zweeris is a passionate flower bulb grower who is almost 90 years old. In his backyard, he has a whole collection of all these old kinds of flower bulbs that he still lovingly nurses. Dozens of varieties, some over a century old, that sometimes even I have never heard of before. And the stories he tells about his flower bulbs and the flower bulb world from back in the day are just wonderful, too.
How his father, in his nursery in Akersloot, almost lost Philippe de Comines. He has planted them close to the ditch and rats had eaten almost every last one of them. And did you know that Tulip Black Parrot comes from Philippe de Comines? Just out of the blue a parrot tulip mutated from Philippe de Comines! And Philippe the Comines is good, too: after all, Black Parrot is still grown in abundance every year. But when mister Zweeris starts about his Ixia’s and yellow Crocuses you really are stuck listening to him for the rest of the day.
It pains me to tell you that mister Zweeris is now unable to take care of his flowers. Now he has to be cared for in a nursing home. I have received some of his unique flower bulb collection, but the largest part of it is in good hands at the Hortus Bulborum in Limmen.
I do feel like it is nice for mister Zweeris that I can now offer you this beautiful, old Tulip, and that she gets some new shine at my web site. He calls me every now and then to check in on his beloved flowers, and then I can tell him about this.