ASTANA – Rare and beautiful Greig tulips bloom again in Kazakhstan’s Turkistan Region. Yet, these stunning flowers are in need of protection, reported the press service of the Kazakh Ministry of Ecology and Natural Resources on April 6.
“People pluck tulips to take beautiful photos, collect a bouquet, or just for fun, preventing them from forming seeds. As a result, the natural regeneration of the population is disrupted, reducing the area where these plants grow. Because most wild tulips reproduce by seeds rather than bulbs, a plucked tulip is lost forever,” reads the ministry’s press release.
The Greig tulip, often known as “the king of tulips,” has 15-centimeter petals and a vivid blossom and is the ancestor of almost 300 modern varieties. It can only be found in the Zhambyl, Turkistan, and Kyzylorda regions.
There are more than 3,000 varieties of tulips in the world. Kazakhstan has 35 species, and 18 of them, including the Greig tulip, are listed in the Red Book of Kazakhstan. Twelve species are endemic, meaning they only grow in Kazakhstan.
The ministry warned that damage to plants included in the Red Book of Kazakhstan provides for criminal liability, including a fine of up to 3,000 monthly calculation index (MCI) units, or 10.3 million tenge ($23,260), corrective work, community work for up to 800 hours, restriction of liberty for up to three years, or imprisonment for the same period with confiscation of property.