Thousands of Irena Sendler Tulips Bloom in Front of POLIN Museum
“Recalling the figure of Irena Sendler, who helped the Jews in the ghetto, we would like to commemorate all those - known to us by name and those unknown - who had no chance or luck to be saved as children from the ghetto. [...] Every spring, yellow daffodils bloom around the POLIN Museum, symbols of remembrance of the participants in the 1943 Warsaw Ghetto Uprising [...]. Let these red tulips, a gift from our friends at the Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands, blooming in a sea of yellow flowers, remind you that you cannot be indifferent to the harm of others”, said Zygmunt Stępiński, Director of the POLIN Museum, during the tulip bulb planting ceremony in 2022.
Daphne Bergsma, the Ambassador of the Kingdom of the Netherlands to Poland, then said then: “We like to name tulips in honour of various wonderful people. This is the so-called baptism for our flowers."
Today, a few months after that event, three thousand "Irena Sendler" variety tulips decorate the avenue named after her at the POLIN Museum of the History of Polish Jews. Flowers, planted to commemorate the 80th anniversary of the outbreak of the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising, complement the composition of daffodils which remind us, every year, of this event in Muranów. The tulip bulbs were donated by the Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands in Poland. The planting ceremony, which took place 22nd October 2022, was attended by:
- Daphne Bergsma, Ambassador of the Kingdom of the Netherlands in Poland,
- Rafał Trzaskowski, Mayor of the City of Warsaw,
- Ewa Malinowska-Grupińska, Chair of the Warsaw City Council,
- Zygmunt Stępiński, Director of the POLIN Museum of the History of Polish Jews,
- Janina Zgrzembska, daughter of Irena Sendler,
- Elżbieta Ficowska, rescued by Irena Sendler.
The event was also attended by pupils of Pawiak Heroes Primary School No. 210, representatives of the Partnership Przepis na Muranów and by POLIN Museum volunteers.
Irena Sendler- Righteous Among the Nations
"I was brought up in the spirit that the matter of religion, nationality and belonging to a certain race is indifferent - what is important is the person!", she wrote in her biography.
Irena Sendler is one of the best known Polish Righteous Among the Nations. She received that title in 1965, for services during the period of German occupation (1939-1945). Active in both the underground and also in the structure of the "Żegota" Council to Aid Jews, she conducted activities to rescue Jewish children from the Warsaw ghetto. Together with a group of co-workers, she managed to save hundreds of children.
The tulip variety, honouring Irena Sendler, was created in 2008 by a Dutch grower, Jan Lighart. According to specialists, tulips of the 'Irena Sendler' variety are resistant to diseases, pests and low temperatures and, after cutting, they can stand in a vase for an exceptionally long time.