In Italy, u-pick flowers have now become a trend. Every spring, tulip fields multiply, especially in the area around Milan and Turin, offering visitors not only the chance to buy flowers but also the experience of picking them themselves in the open air. It all started in 2017 when a Dutch couple, Edwin Koeman, 45, and his wife, Nitsuhe Wolanios, decided to rent a few hectares of land and planted half a million tulip bulbs on it.
“We started seven years ago, and we’ve had great success because we were the first to start the u-pick in Italy. We became known all over the country: there were a lot of TV stations and newspapers that came to report because people could cut and pick flowers by themselves,” said Edwin Koeman, who comes from a family of tulip growers.
“I used to work for a (flower) bulbs export company selling all over the world, especially in Italy. Then, I helped my brother manage a u-pick field in the US and started to think about establishing something similar myself in Italy. I looked for land close to Milan because a lot of people live here, the climate is good. That’s how I started.”
More than 600,000 tulips of 400 different varieties have grown in his field in Arese on the western outskirts of Milan, and he proudly shows them as dozens of people take selfies while picking flowers and placing them in baskets distributed at the entrance. Families with their dogs, groups of friends, and couples are sharing joyful moments together.
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