After immigrating to Canada from the Netherlands in 1948, Peter Warmerdam and his family settled in the Fraser Valley in 1950. Peter brought his Dutch heritage, horticultural knowledge and farming experience to the Bradner area where he began growing a few acres of daffodil flowers.
In 1974, Peter purchased land on Sumas Prairie in Abbotsford for growing gladiolus. The family farm has since expanded their crops to include outdoor tulips, daffodils, gladiolus and peonies along with greenhouse tulips and daffodils.
The Abbotsford Tulip Festival has been created by Alexis, Peter’s granddaughter, to celebrate the beauty of tulips and the Dutch heritage in the Fraser Valley. The Abbotsford Tulip Festival welcomes you to stroll through their tulip field and enjoy the brilliant display of color along with other activities offered at the festival.
LIFE OF A TULIP
FALL | Tulip bulbs imported from the Netherlands are transported to Canada in large shipping containers via ocean freightliners. The tulip bulbs arrive at our farm in late September and then they are planted in the field starting at the beginning of October.
WINTER | During the winter months the bulbs lay dormant in the field. Their only protection from the elements are the furrowed row of soil and a layer of straw. Tulip bulbs are susceptible to damage if planted in a poorly drained field; therefore, we take great care to protect our bulbs from adverse weather conditions. We carefully manage our tulip fields by monitoring field drainage, the slope of the land and choosing the optimum soil type for a successful flower season.
SPRING | Tulip flowers are harvested during the month of April. The flowers are hand picked by a group of dedicated workers. Then they are carefully bunched and packaged for distribution.
Flowers that are not picked create a brilliant display of color which is the main attraction of the Abbotsford Tulip Festival.
Once the tulip flowers have completed their flowering cycle, a specialized piece of farm equipment removes the petals from the stem allowing the bulb to mature. Bulb growth continues even after the flower has been picked.
By the second week in May, the tulips have completed their blooming cycle. At this time the Abbotsford Tulip Festival will come to a close.
SUMMER | Approximately 8 weeks after the flowers have bloomed and the bulbs have had time to mature, the bulbs are harvested.
By mid-June the tulip bulbs are harvested from the ground with specialized equipment. A modified potato harvester digs the bulbs which are then transported by large wagons to the farm. The bulbs are unloaded there via a hopper, then moved through a tank of water which washes away the excess soil. The clean bulbs are then dried, graded and placed in wooden crates. There they are stored in temperature controlled rooms over the summer waiting to begin the next life cycle of a tulip bulb.
Pack a picnic or visit one of the food trucks and enjoy a fun filled day with family and friends. With photo cut out boards, a covered picnic area and a children’s play area, there is something for everyone!
For those looking to bring some of the beauty home, bouquets of fresh cut tulips will be available at the on-site flower market. For those who want the full farm experience, wander through our designated u-pick area and build a bouquet of your own. For the beginner or avid gardeners, bulbs may be ordered at the market and will be delivered in the fall.
· 10 acres of Stunning Tulip Fields
· Cut-out Photo Boards
· Food Trucks (Weekends Only)
· Hay Bale Playground
· Sandbox & Lawn Games
· Duck Races and Tether Ball
· Slack Lining
· Covered Picnic Area
· U-Pick Field
· On-Site Flower Market
· Spectacular Views of Mt. Baker
General Admission | $5.00 | Ages 2+
Photographer’s Admission | $15.00 | Adjusted Hours
Season’s Pass | $40.00 includes: Parking, Season Admission for 1 person, Adjusted hours for Photographers
Vehicle Parking | $5.00
36737 North Parallel Road
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