Hulsdonck was born in Antwerp but spent his early years in the southern Dutch port of Middelburg, where the flower painter Ambrosius Bosschaert (1573–1621) was his model. In this late work Hulsdonck employs a standard Antwerp composition, familiar from pictures by Jan Breughel I and II and by Frans Snyders (from whom the rhythmic tendrils come).
Inscription: Signed (lower left): IVHVLSDON[C]K· [initials in monogram] FE·
private collection, France (sale, Dorotheum, Vienna, December 5, 1960, no. 50, bought in); [J. R. Bier, Haarlem, in 1962]; [Brod Gallery, London, in 1962]; William Drown, London (until 1964; sold to Böhler); [Julius Böhler, Munich, 1964; sold to MMA]
Haarlem. J. R. Bier. "Hollandse 17e eeuwse meesters," 1962, no. 13.
London. Brod Gallery. "Paintings by Old Dutch and Flemish Masters," 1962, no. 35.
Walter A. Liedtke. Flemish Paintings in The Metropolitan Museum of Art. New York, 1984, vol. 1, pp. 107–8; vol. 2, pl. 48, considers it one of the artist's most advanced and, presumably, later works.