•By Jan Jackson –
WOODBURN, Ore. – Always with one eye on the weather report and the other in the field, the Iverson family is once again ready to open the month-long Wooden Shoe Tulip Festival. In addition to growing tulips, the family also grows corn, grass seed, wheat, pumpkins, green beans, and table and wine grapes. The visitor-intensive 40-acres of tulips and daffodils that mostly causes them to keep their eyes on the weather.
“We always have to stay right on top of things to make it work, because people are coming from all over the world to see them,” Barb Iverson, one of the principals of the family farm says. “However, the gardens are open and beautiful rain or shine. We’ll open March 20 and close May 3 this year
What you can do in the gardens . . .
It’s a great experience to walk about through the fields (and/or take guided tours aboard specialized vehicles) and see:
• How the crews cut and bundle flowers by hand to put in cold storage.
• How they remove all the remaining flower heads after the spring show
so they won’t drop on the ground and create disease in the fields.
• How the stems are allowed to die down naturally before the June
• How in October, the tulips are planted two rows at a time in raised rows
• How the furrows work to ensure the bulbs have proper drainage and to
make harvesting easier.
• How the fields are rotated every five years.
In addition to the Wooden Shoe Tulip growing operation, it operates a gift shop (open daily 10 am – 4 pm) as well as provides all sorts of food, entertainment and hands-on activities during the festival.
Make it a daylong event . . .
To make a day of it, you can bring your family (and even the dog if its on a leash!) and bring a picnic lunch or buy food onsite. Daily wine tasting available from the Wooden Shoe Vineyards.
Wooden Shoe Tulip Festival hours are 9 am to 6 pm daily and individual admission is $5 per person or $20 maximum per car. Only 45 minutes from Portland and 30 minutes from Salem.
Find out the details . . .
For more information, visit www.woodenshoe.com.
Photo by Jan Jackson