TOPEKA (KSNT) – The Shawnee County Parks and Recreation staff have started the enormous task of planting tulip bulbs in the county park gardens throughout Topeka.

Over 47,000 bulbs will be planted this fall in Ted Ensley Gardens and other gardens maintained by the Parks and Rec. Department.

“We figure year to year, about a thousand hours goes into planting tulips for Tulip Time in the Spring,” said Mike McLaughlin, Shawnee County Parks and Rec. Communications and Public Information Supervisor. “The Tulips are planted in October, they will bloom in April and we will pull them out of the ground and offer them for sale about two weeks after Tulip Time is over.”

Around 3,000 bulbs have already been planted, according to Shawnee County Parks and Rec. Horticulturist Traci Podlena. She said that thousands of bulbs will be planted at the following locations:

  • 40,500 bulbs at Ted Ensley Gardens
  • 6,000 around Lake Shawnee
  • 20,000 at Ward Meade park
  • 10,000 in Gage Park

Many of the tulip bulbs are planted by volunteers. If you or your group is interested in volunteering to help with planting you can email Riley Shafer at or call 785-251-6800.