Two big tulip growers in the Skagit Valley welcome visitors and we quickly found our favorite: RoozeGaarde. A $5 admission fee gives wandering privileges through beautifully planted gardens. The views are stunning.
RooseGaarde has been in business for nearly 60 years and is run by the five sons of the original owners, immigrants from – where else? – Holland. The gardens are replanted each fall with nearly 250,000 flower bulbs, a process that takes about 10 weeks. Their catalog claims they are the biggest bulb grower in the U.S.
A local innkeeper told us that with bus tours the gardens can see up to 15,000 visitors a day, making the mantra “get there early” good advice. Despite the steady flows of people everyone we met here was uniformly friendly and courteous.
There are plenty of fields for driveby viewing so it’s not necessary to pay to view. But this is a great spot to see labeled specimens, get planting ideas, and experience the wow factor of professional designs.