The Aalsmeer Flower Auction
Even if you don’t plan on bringing any seeds home, you might also consider swinging by the Bloemenmarkt at night, as the shops are closing up and eager owners slash their prices on cut fresh flowers. After all, couldn’t your hotel room use a little sprucing up?
See also: Our guide to recommended cheap hotels in Amsterdam.
Amsterdam is fertile ground for free and almost-free souvenirs. While floral bouquets don’t travel well on an airplane (and may not be allowed!), seed packets and bulbs are both easy to pack, travel well, and will blossom back home. Plus, they’re totally cheap.
Every morning, the Bloemenveiling Aalsmeer, or Aalsmeer flower auction, takes place in nearby Aalsmeer, 10 km south of Amsterdam. The fast-paced auction gives tourists an introduction to the global flower market, as 19 million flowers get bought and sold daily, before being shipped worldwide. Try picking up some sample seeds or bulbs at the market for a cheapo souvenir.
Since the pandemic people have gotten sick of seeing discarded masks strewn around our cities, knowing that they will end up in a landfill or in the ocean. However, one Dutch woman is proving that things don’t have to be this way – masks do not need to end up as non-recyclable litter, we can make biodegradable masks! [Photos: Marie Bee Bloom/Facebook]
Flowers are a lifeline for bees, and sadly we have seen a decline in bee populations worldwide in recent years. Bees have an important environmental role, pollinating plants as they pass from one flower to another. In short, we as humans need bees, and this is why Amsterdam has been taking action over the past few years to increase bee populations, creating wildflower areas purposefully in the city. This lead to a 45% increase in honeybee populations in Amsterdam since 2000, making it one of the only places in the world where honeybee populations are not in decline. Fantastic, right?
Marianne de Gro0t-Pons has found a way to create sustainable masks that actually help the environment, rather than harming it. Marianne lives in Utrecht and she was sick of seeing ‘blue disposable masks, thrown on the streets and sidewalks’. So, she decided to take action and developed a mask that is 100% biodegradable. Moreover, these masks contain flower seeds, so that once they have been used they can be buried and flourish into flowers as the rice paper degrades into the earth.
So, if you’d like to invest in some biodegradable flower seed masks, you can visit the Marie Bee Bloom website and start shopping. These masks give the same protection as homemade fabric masks and they are produced right here in the Netherlands, meaning that they won’t have far to travel before they arrive at your door.
Amsterdam Seed Supply offers a large range of award-winning ‘Auto-flowering’ cannabis strains. When a marijuana plant is “Auto-flowering”, it will flower automatically when it reaches a given maturity, regardless of photoperiod. Auto-flowering cannabis seeds are in almost all cases crossings (hybrids) between Cannabis ruderalis and Cannabis indica and/or Cannabis sativa, these Ruderalis strains come from the far east, where there are limited light hours that force the plant into flowering as quickly as possible to thrive and reproduce. As said before, they start to flower automatically, this in comparison to the ‘classic’ Cannabis sativa and Cannabis indica which need a reduction of sun hours a day in order to flower.
Autoflowering marijuana seeds with Cannabis Ruderalis heritage simply start to flower when they reach a certain age. These strains originate from Ruderalis genetics that includes strains like “Low Rider” (which you might spot in the genetic make-up of many autoflowering cannabis seeds) combined with the normal Indica and Sativa strains and are native from extreme regions of the world like Siberia. Most autoflowering cannabis seeds start to flower around week 3 and although autoflowering cannabis seeds have already been on the market for a while, in the last few years, the popularity of autoflowering seeds has skyrocketed thanks to the ease of growing them. It is the go-to plant of choice for up and coming growers that are looking to experiment with growing cannabis as a hobby.
Choose Amsterdam’s Legendary AutoFlowering Seeds
Autoflowering cannabis seeds are also well suited to be grown outdoors in regions that do not have many hours of sunlight per year. Places like the northern and southern hemispheres are great to grow autoflowering cannabis seeds since the limited amount of light will not affect the growth and flower cycle of the plant, nor will it get stressed into flowering less or interrupting the flower cycle altogether. This means that all our autoflowering cannabis seeds will make for great balcony plants that can be planted in the spring and harvested by the end of the summer.
It is possible that one of the few downsides to growing Autoflowering seeds is the little yield that they produce, compared to a feminized strain that can have its growth controlled to make it larger, autoflowering cannabis seeds need to be grown as quickly as possible since they will immediately begin to flower and in the worst-case scenario the plant will be so small that it would have only one cola.