MODESTO, Calif. — The name Modesto literally translates to "modest," but when spring hits the San Joaquin Valley, there is nothing modest about the farmland in Modesto.
Springtime is tulip season at Dutch Hollow Farms, a flower farm which originated in the garden at John Bos' mom's house.
"I told my mom years ago her tulips were beautiful, and she said in her thick Dutch accent, 'Yes, why don't you grow them for cut flowers?' And I said, Ok," Bos said.
Today more than 160,000 tulip bulbs are planted on what used to be an old dairy farm. The variety is a labor of love. The flowers are delicate and they are planted at the same time every year.
"We plant in late November," Bos said. "In fact, we plant the day after Thanksgiving."
This massive flower bed is more than just a business. It's an introduction to springtime.
"Tulips love, love, love, rain, water, and warmth. Then they explode," Bos says.
Dutch Hollow is an interactive farm where you pick the flowers, equipped with animals, too. It’s also a place to come learn about the tulip and the flower's origin.
"Most people don't know that tulips come from Turkey, and they still grow wild in Turkey today," John said.
When the tulips are in bloom, there is nothing modest about Modesto, but if you want to witness the display, you'd better act fast. The season doesn't last long, and usually wraps up by the end of April.
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