Located down Cantrell Street, Poston Gardens lies across 30 acres of land, ready to be filled with colorful tulips and — for the first time — daffodils.
The tulip farm opened for the first time in spring 2019, importing tulip bulbs directly from Holland.
This year, it will open in early March, continuing to be the biggest tulip farm in the Waxahachie area.
The reason behind the season
Poston Gardens will be open for about six weeks. With every tulip sale, it will donate a portion of funds to Daymark Living.
Daymark Living is a facility that helps adults with intellectual and developmental delays, or IDD, reach their full potential and obtain greater independence in their daily lives. They strive to enhance the lives of each individual there.
John Poston, founder and president of Daymark Living, felt a need to start the facility because his son, Michael Poston, grew up with Down Syndrome.
Poston wanted to create a living environment where his son and many others suffering from any form of IDD could learn basic skills and independence.
Samuel Broads, who is a part of the marketing team for the facility, gave his insight on the foundation.
“This place is just where they live, but it’s not meant to seclude them from everybody else,” he said. “Michael is a perfect example of that. He is an employee at Fresh Market coffee.”
Last year, Poston started the tulip season with 1 million bulbs planted.
“It’s a tourism business,” Poston said. “The idea is that this business shares its profits with Post Gardens foundations, which funds scholarships at Daymark Living.”
Behind the scenes, farmers are at work
Poston found his team through connections and a trip to Holland.
“I got so lucky because they’re all Dutch, and I had no idea when I started all of this,” Poston said. “I just flew over to Holland to try to figure this out.”
Thijs VanZadl is an expert bulb farmer from Holland who has been in the bulb business for more than 25 years. For the second year, VanZadl is donating his time to this event. He supports the idea and mission of Daymark Living.
VanZadl said they will plant 35 varieties of tulips this season.
The Tamminga family also plays an essential role in this project. Kars Tamminga, a native of the Netherlands, is a resident in Waxahachie. He was connected to Poston through Brett Hess, a real-estate agent in the area. Tamminga and his son, Luke Tamminga, supply equipment for the planting process of the bulbs. Luke is a local farmer, who knows the process behind farming. He has a crew made up of three men: David, Poncho and Ruben.
Together, Luke Tamminga and VanZadl take on the physical challenge of this project, in preparation for the spring season.
About the bulbs
Tamminga was the one to connect Poston with Bill Van Houten, a previous co-owner of the ABBOTT-IPCO company, which supplies bulbs to the Dallas Arboretum.
Poston partners with the company to receive his bulbs.
According to a news release sent out by Poston Gardens, there have been four new tulip varieties released worldwide: “One of the tulips will be officially named 'The City of Waxahachie,' granted by KAVB, the Dutch Bulb Organization of Growers and Exporters.”
KAVB is an international registry where tulips can be trademarked and named. The process can take a couple of months, as the organization has to make sure the name is not in current use. Once permission is granted, Waxahachians will be able to pride themselves on having a tulip named after their city.
This year, Poston Gardens has various activities for the community to enjoy throughout each week.
Poston plans on having a live band play outside on the weekends, and he mentioned the possibility of food trucks popping in if the crowd is large enough.
City Director of Communications and Marketing, Amy Borders, stated her appreciation for Poston Gardens.
"The City has been proud to work with Poston Gardens during the planning and inaugural year, and we are so excited to have this amazing asset in our community," she said. "Everyone who has visited loves it!"
Borders has seen the effect this foundation has had on the community. “The impact that Poston Gardens has made to the community has been tremendous,” she said. “Waxahachie has always been a tourist destination, but we have certainly seen an increase of tour groups and visitors during tulip season.”
The garden will be open from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m daily. This season is said to start late February/ early March. Tickets are now on sale to the public.
On a weekday, adults will pay $15, senior citizens will pay $12 and children will pay $5.
During the weekend, prices go up slightly. Adults will pay $20, senior citizens will pay $15 and children will remain paying $5.
Parking will be a separate fee of $5.
Each tulip will also be sold at $2 per bulb.
For more information on the gardens, visit https://postongardens.com/. For more information on Daymark Living, visit https://daymarkliving.com/.