A festive floral display blooms in the Sierra foothills.
"To me, it’s just a piece of heaven," says Mary Ryan, 84, a scion of Lizzie and Arthur McLaughlin, who in 1887 bought a wooded slope near the Sierra foothill town of Volcano, Calif., and took up planting daffodils. The cheery flowers, introduced there by a Dutch homesteader, captivated Lizzie, who spread them throughout her garden.
After she died, her children kept cultivating the flowers in her memory. Now, five generations later, the six-acre clearing harbors an estimated 400,000 daffodil bulbs—some 300 varieties in all, including golden King Alfred and creamy Mount Hood.
The bulbs typically bloom from mid-March to mid-April (call for exact dates). An old blacksmith shop doubles as a snack shop. Admission to the garden is free; find it on Rams Horn Grade off Pine Grove–Volcano Road, three miles north of Volcano, Calif. (209) 296-7048.
Photography by Robert Holmes
This article was first published in March 2007. Some facts may have aged gracelessly. Please call ahead to verify information.