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In 1860 the Royal General Bulb Growers' Association (KAVB) was founded (originally only for Dutch members but nowadays also for foreign members). The main task at that time was to organize floral exhibitions.

-           The association has about 1600 members, most of them bulb growers, bulb forcers and wholesale companies.
-           We have contacts with governmental organisations and political parties to promote the interests of our members. For instance in discussions about environmental issues like the use of fertilizers and pesticides, restrictions in use of energy, employment, and are negotiating for collective agreements on behalf of our members.
-           We also provide our members with information about developments in the bulb growing sector. Through our journal "BloembollenVisie", but also by organizing meetings and training courses. In addition, we are housing the most complete library on flower bulbs in the world.
-           Furthermore, we provide specific services to members. We are arranging trading regulations, host an independent arbitration tribunal that members can turn to when, for instance, parties have a dispute on a trading agreement, and organize floral exhibitions.

We work closely together with other branch organisations like:
-           The International Flower Bulb Centre, the organisation for the international promotion of flower bulbs.
-           The Dutch Wholesalers' Association, the organisation for the wholesale companies.
-           The Commodity Board for Horticultural Products, a regulatory organisation.
-           The Flower Bulb Inspection Service, the organisation that safeguards the product quality.
-           The Flower Bulb Unit of the Applied Plant Research, an important Dutch botanical research institute.
-           Plant Breeders Rights authorities from different countries.


To be traded and for examination purposes (trueness-to-type, distinction, uniformity and stability) it is necessary that a cultivar can be identified by its description and name.

For the flower bulb industry the KAVB gathers and registers all cultivars. The whole of descriptions and names can be regarded as a the civil registration service for the flower bulb industry.

Since the end of the 19th century the KAVB is active in the areas of name-giving (nomenclature) and registration of bulbous, cormous and tuberous-rooted plants. The KAVB has been appointed as international cultivar registration authority (ICRA) for genera like Tulipa, Hippeastrum, Hyacinthus, bulbous Irises, Crocus and Muscari. For the genera Lilium, Narcissus, Dahlia and the large-flowered Gladiolus the KAVB has been appointed as national cultivar registration authority (NCRA) and assists the ICRA with registrations.

With registration the description of a cultivar is linked to a cultivar name.

The proposed name will be checked using the latest edition of the International Code of Nomenclature for Cultivated Plants (ICNCP) and the "UPOV Recommendations on Variety Denominations". The latter is a document issued by the International Union for the Protection of New Varieties of Plants (UPOV) convention. This convention is signed by countries with Plant Breeders Rights.

Plant Patent in the U.S. and trademark registers will also be checked to ensure that the proposed name is available.

Registrations will be published in our journal "BloembollenVisie", in the database on this website (Database geregistreerde cultivars), in the Classified List and International Register of Tulip Names, in the International Checklist for Hyacinths and Miscellaneous Bulbs, and in the international registers of Lilium, Dahlia, Narcissus and large-flowered Gladiolus.

To register a new cultivar the registration form, duly completed and including a colour photograph, should be returned to the KAVB.

It would be appreciated if some bulbs or tubers of the cultivar to be registered could be sent to the KAVB to be planted in our Trial Garden.

FAQ's (Frequently Asked Questions) Registrations

  • How do I know whether my tulip is new?
  • What does ® mean behind a cultivar name?
  • How do I find out whether a cultivar has been granted Plant Breeders Rights?
  • How do I find out whether a name is a registered trademark?


How do I know whether my tulip is new?

You can have your tulip judged at the weekly KAVB floral exhibition. A competent commission with large knowledge of the assortment will examine your tulip and will give judgment. Another possibility is to send in material of your tulip for planting on our trial garden. The plant and flower will be examined several times by a commission of experts.

What does ® mean behind a cultivar name?

The ® symbol literally means registered, or recorded by letter.

It is used for many different purposes, but in all cases it is used to indicate protection of some sort. As far as we know no official rules exist for the use of ®.

The following situations can be encountered:

-plant breeders rights will be applied for in the future.

-plant breeders rights have been applied for and the cultivar has provisional protection.

-plant breeders rights have been granted.

-plant breeders rights have been denied or ended and the appearence is given that the cultivar is protected by plant breeders rights.

-for the name a trademark has been applied for.

-the name has been registered as a trademark.

How do I find out whether a cultivar has been granted Plant Breeders Rights?

Check the sites http://www.plantenrassen.nl/ or http://www.cpvo.europa.eu/

How do I find out whether a name is a registered trademark?

Check the site http://www.bmb-bbm.org/

Disclaimer | KAVB 2009