Frequently Asked Questions
The Flower Fields are an alcohol and tobacco free environment. Smoking and alcoholic beverages are not permitted onsite. No bicycles, or drones are permitted.
It is called the Tecolote® Giant Ranunculus, which is one of the finest strains of ranunculus plants in the world. The ranunculus flower is native to Asia Minor and is a member of the buttercup family. This unique blossom also is known as a Persian Buttercup or Ranunculus Asiatic.
Over 50 acres are devoted to raising the ranunculus bulb crop; approximately five acres are used for other specialty flowers.
Thanks to cooperative efforts between the land’s owner, the grower, The City of Carlsbad, The Carlsbad Agricultural Improvement Fund and the California Coastal Conservancy, this colorful hillside will continue to welcome visitors for years to come.
A portion of the flower crop is sold as cut flowers. The remainder of these flowers are grown to provide the ranunculus bulbs. Fresh cut flowers are sold at the Armstrong Garden Center.
Fresh cut flowers are available for purchase along with potted plants, bulbs and a variety of other items in the Armstrong Garden Center Gift Shop.
The flowers die back and produce seed for re-planting in these same fields for the next season. We feel that by allowing the plant to complete its life cycle, it helps to produce a more superior bulb crop.
Mostly machines harvest the bulbs – actually tuberous roots, corms or rhizomes. We sell the bulbs here at the Armstrong Garden Center and they are also available at other garden centers after the fields have closed for the season. And of course, every fall the bulbs are sold at nurseries and garden centers across the country. These bulbs also are sold online through EasytoGrowBulbs.com.
The best time to view the flowers is usually mid-March through Mid-April. However, these dates may change if the bloom is either early or late due to weather conditions, etc.
No, vehicles are not allowed in the fields — just service and farming equipment. However, you may walk along the designated paths. Tractor Wagon rides are available for a nominal fee for those who would like a trip around the fields and/or for those who may have trouble walking. Wagon rides are wheelchair accessible.
In order to respect the rights and ensure the safety of our guests, we do not allow pets. Only Certified Service Animals are allowed.
Yes, The Flower Fields® will remain open on rainy days as long as it is safe for visitors to walk along the pathways. If the weather conditions cause the pathways to be considered unsafe, we will close.
Benches, picnic tables and chairs are available throughout The Flower Fields site.
Please bring a sweater or light jacket, as it may get breezy walking up the hill. Comfortable shoes, sunglasses, and a hat also are good ideas. Do not forget your cameras!
No, but it is a hillside so walk carefully. Take your time and enjoy your walk.
Yes, but we do not recommend pushing a wheelchair up or down the pathways between the flowers on the hillside. There is a pathway along the bottom of the fields that is made up of hard-packed dirt and decomposed granite that offers a spectacular view of the fields and access our artist gardens, themed gardens, Santa’s playground, historical poinsettia display, organic demonstration garden, restrooms and concessions facility. We also offer our Antique Tractor Wagon Ride. It is an additional $5 for adults and $3 for children. The wagon ride is a passenger wagon pulled by an antique tractor boarded by ramp and is able to accommodate wheelchairs and walkers. It takes you out to the furthest blooming areas, up to the top of the hill and back to the boarding ramp near our front entrance. It also includes an audio recording about our history and what we do.
Parking is free.
There are a limited number of handicapped parking spaces available in front of the Armstrong Garden Center, which is located just north of The Flower Fields entrance gate.
No. Guests are required to bring their own wheelchairs and strollers.
The Flower Fields information hotline telephone number is (760) 431-0352.
Mellano & Company of San Luis Rey is the production arm and onsite grower. The Ecke family owns the land.
There are food vendors on the weekends and vending machines available during the weekdays. There also are many nearby restaurants and fast food outlets. The Flower Fields also encourages our guests to bring in food to picnic on site and we have several picnic areas for your convenience.
To find information on public transportation to The Flower Fields, please call your local transport authority. If within North San Diego County, call (760) 966-6500.
Changing the vase water regularly will extend the beauty of any fresh cut flower. You can add the following to your water in a medium sized vase:
Teaspoon of sugar
1/2 can of lemon-lime soda (non-diet)
Commercial (packaged) floral extender
****We do not recommend adding bleach to your water mix for ranunculus!
The package of bulbs purchased this season will last for up to two years if stored in a cool, dry place (40°-80° F).
Yes, but it is best to plant your bulbs after the last freeze because the bulbs will freeze if planted too early.
Yes to both questions. Prized for their unique blossoms, ranunculus come in a broad range of colors including yellow, white, orange, pink, red and picotee (mix). Ranunculus plants complement any sunny garden or patio area with their striking spring colors. The plants can tolerate sunny areas and partial shade. The best outdoor climate range is 40°-85° F with a decent amount of humidity. The plants need to be kept moist so they do not dry out. Indoors is best for exposing the plant to a good natural light source but away from direct and intense windows ill light. Be sure to maintain an even temperature; 50°-70° is ideal. Make certain the plants are kept moist at all times. Never allow the plants to dry out or sit in water.
For best results plant your bulbs:
Warm climates: September through January.
Cold climates: Early spring, after the last frost. The bulbs or tubers should be planted toes down in a well-drained medium soil mix (in the ground or garden pot). Space the bulbs 6-8 inches apart and cover with 1/2-1 inch of soil. The bulbs do not need to be soaked prior to planting.
Watering your plants: Keep your soil moist at all times. After bulbs have sprouted, water 2-3 times weekly. Never allow the plant to dry out. If in a container, do not allow the plants to sit in standing water.
Fertilizing your plants: Use a good, balanced yard fertilizer. We suggest a 10-10-10 formula once a month.
Fall planting – blooms February through May (16″-24″ plants)
Spring planting – blooms April through June (16″-24″ plants)
Pest Protection: Ranunculus, like other spring plants attract all kinds of garden pests, including: whiteflies, aphids, worms and other soil born pests. We suggest consulting your local garden center for help with any of these possible infestations.
We feel it is always a good idea to remove your bulbs from the soil after the blooming season. You can always ensure a better yield of flowers for the following season.