Whatever Happened To . . .Davis Gardens?

Davis Gardens, c. 1916

Davis Gardens was a small gardening business started by James W. Davis on April 29, 1911, that eventually grew to be the largest greenhouse operation west of the Mississippi. For years they grew fancy cucumbers and flowers, but ended up exclusively growing tomatoes.

After nearly fifty-four successful years in business, the boiler failed on January 15th, 1965. The staff worked desperately to save the crop as the temperature outside dipped to 6 degrees below zero. Four overcast days later, on January 19th, the second boiler blew up, spewing water over complex electrical systems. The young plants froze.

Considering the exorbitant cost of renovation and repairs, the stockholders and heir made the decision to close the plant and sell the twenty greenhouses.

For more information, please check the article by Jim Arpy in the Times-Democrat newspaper of March 13, 1965.

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