Archive for October, 2017

October 2017 Cultural Notes & To Do List


This month the focus is on finishing the blooms, preparing them for transport to the show and the grooming and presentation of the blooms for the show.

1. Care and feeding,
-Tie cedar support stakes under the blooms to keep the stems straight and the blooms upright. A cocked bloom will be severely discounted by the judges. Keep raising the support stake up against the bottom of the bloom to prevent or correct cocking.
-Water and feed plants sparingly at this time (October time frame). Feed with liquid fertilizer solution about 1 pint at each watering. See fertilizer recommendations below. It’s a good practice to make up a 30 gallon garbage can of the fertilizer solution and set this can out in the sunlight so that it will remain relatively warm. Then water/feed out of this barrel. Note: If you use fresh tap water instead, you will be watering/feeding with a water temperature below 50 deg. That sets back the plant each time you water. Water/feed sparingly, preferably around 5:00 pm. Some prefer to water early in the day, but if you do be sure to use the warm water from the barrel.
-The recommended dilution of the fertilizer is: ½ tsp of the standard 20-9-20 midseason fertilizer plus ¼ tsp Sulphate of Potash (0-0-50) per gallon of water. That’s essentially half the usual dilution of (20-9-20) you’ve been using for mid season plus the potash is added to harden off the stems and the petals.
-Sheltering your plants is crucial. Get the plants moved into some sort of shelter where the blooms are protected from rain, dew, wind and direct sunlight. It does not have to be a totally enclosed shelter but enclosed shelters prove to be of advantage in developing near perfect blooms. The blooms do not need direct sunlight but some filtered sunlight is desirable. I have pinned white sheets under clear roof panels. This filters the sun and additionally collects dew that collects on the panels at night. If you move your plants into enclosed spaces then you must also provide lots of cool dry ventilation to protect against petal rot. Multiple fans blowing gently across the blooms is the usual solution. It’s generally desirable to keep the daytime temperatures below 75 deg and the night time temperatures above 50 deg during this final bloom phase.
If you move your plants into area where the sunlight is poor or non existent, then you will need considerable supplemental light as discussed in the Sept. To Do list.
-Watch for Aphids and other insects. The Marathon systemic insecticide you added in June or July should protect you very well from Aphids; but it does not catch all insects and bugs, and if you didn’t use it or used a diluted application then it’s possible you could find aphids and other insects such as earwigs in your blooms. Earwigs have to be handpicked from the blooms and other such bugs must be caught with a watchful eye before they severely damage the bloom. If the blooms are dry and out of the sunlight it is possible to spray the bloom with a very fine solution of liquid insecticide such as diazinon or other mild insecticides. Generally you will need to spray every 4-5 days apart for 3 or 4 applications. This could in some cases destroy your blooms; but then so would the Aphids. If aphids are in the blooms at the show it will be downgraded, or if badly infested the bloom will be removed from the show.
You need to keep your blooms clean during the bloom development so when damaged petals or rot marred petals are found you should remove them so as not to propagate the problem. Generally speaking you can, with dry fingers, take hold of the petal end and gradually pull and swirl the petal around. This will generally loosen the root and the petal will come out. Sometimes you need to use tweezers to get the petal. Homemade wooden tweezers are preferred.

2. Getting ready for the show:
-As show time approaches you may be able to speed up bloom development with supplemental heat; i.e. electric heaters in the finishing areas. Again the suggested minimum heat in the area is 50 deg. But with supplemental heat you might approach 60 deg. minimum. Also some varieties don’t particularly like too much heat. An old adage generalizes this: Reflexes like light, Incurves like heat, so it takes a lot of judgment and experimenting to tinker with the climate you have.
Likewise if a bloom is developing too early it may be possible to slow the development by placing the plant in a cooler darker area; i.e. a basement. Of course not all varieties respond well to that treatment either and in some cases you might end up stalling the plant out completely.
-Cutting the blooms for the show: Water the plants the night before cutting- start cutting early in the morning. That’s when the stem cells contain the most water
-Cut the stem approximately 20 inches below the bottom of the bud, keeping the bloom support stake attached to the stem. -Cut at a slant and immediately put the stem in a bucket of water. (Lower leaves on the stem should have been removed leaving 3- 5 leaves at the base of the bloom). Then recut the stem approximately 1 inch above the previous cut while under water. This removes air bubbles that cling to the end of the stem and impede water uptake. Let the cut stem remain in the water for a few seconds, and then remove to a vase or water bucket for transportation to the show.
-I cut the incurves 3-4 days before judging day. The centers will develop much faster in a vase or bucket of mildly warm water (100 deg for example) than they will on the plant. Most others I cut 1-2 days before judging. Following these procedures the cut bloom will hold up well for 1-2 weeks. The key is the second cutting under water.
-When you do the final arrangement of your bloom(s) you should make the final cut. Our show rules state that cutting most blooms 16 inches below the bud bottom is desired (That’s the length of the support stake you cut from 16 inch shingles. However the rules allow for up to 18 inch stems and supports for the very large blooms so that the lower petals don’t reach the vase. This also helps where the upper leaves are far below the bloom base and sometimes get shoved into the top of the vase.
Where multiple blooms are required in entry, you should work at cutting the stems slightly below the support so that the stems can be individually trimmed to present the top of each bloom at the same height. Please don’t get carried away and cut your blooms higher, making them more noticeable than comparable entries. The Judges can penalize you for such practices.
-In multiple bloom entries of 3 or 5 blooms per vase, variations to the same height rule are allowed/ preferred such that the back blooms are somewhat higher than the forward blooms.

Good luck! and come to the October meeting to get your materials, exchange ideas and ask questions.
Drs 9/24/2013

October 2017 Newsletter

Seattle, Washington

Evergreen Chrysanthemum Association


MEETING OF THE ECA – is scheduled for THURSDAY OCTOBER 12, 2017 at
7:00 PM at the Seattle Police Athletic Association Office (SPAA) site at 11030 East Marginal Way South, Tukwila. We are meeting in the portable next to the big hall. This is an important meeting as we develop plans for our annual mum show and confirm plans for our award banquet.

ANNUAL FLOWER SHOW The E.C.A. annual flower show will be held Friday November 3rd, from Noon – 4 PM and Saturday November 4th 10 AM – 4 PM & Sunday, November 5th from 10 AM- 4 PM at the Volunteer Park Conservatory, 1400 East Galer Street in Seattle. Set-up is from 9 AM – 5 PM, Thursday November for entries & bloom prep from 9 AM – 5 PM. Tear down is Sunday from 4 PM – 6 PM. We must be out of the Conservatory by 3:30 PM Monday November 6th.

At our October meeting we will discuss details for setting up our show, entering blooms/plants and handling the mechanics of judging and staffing our event. We need all members to attend and volunteer to help with the Show even if you don’t have any flowers to enter. In addition to show set up on Wednesday, we need Judge’s Helpers on Friday and Hosting on Saturday, and Sunday. The Show provides a great way to get to know Club members and learn more about Chrysanthemums. Sign up sheets for this work will be at the meeting.

If you have any questions about the show, please contact Ron Elliott our Show Steward. We’ll have copies of the show rules, entry form and name tags for the show at VPC (and hopefully at our October meeting.)

Another note from Ron Elliot:
Does any one need the green cedar stakes to hold the mums up I could make some? I need to buy cedar shakes Gary and I could cut them. I will try to check on stain at homedepot. Please let Ronnie know ASAP if you are interested.

Draft Minutes from September Meeting
Minutes, ECA Meeting, Sept 14, 2017

The chrysanthemum club meeting brought to order at 7:05 PM. It was held in the portable next to the Hall.. Present were Mark Ross, Bob Ewing, Richard Thompson, Sydney Ogilvie, Heidi Garman, Erica Harris, Kris Stephens, Steve Joyner, Susan Joyner, Rich Aldrich and Jill Aldrich.

Cultural Presentation:
Bloom Stage:
When plants have bud showing color
– Move plant away from sun into green house. Additionally if we start to get heavy dew you should also bring plants inside to protect the bloom

– Back off on water. Water about half as much as you do when plants are in the garden. Over watering will rot the bloom.

– Keep side dressing with your potting medium. Keep roots covered.

– Transition from mid-season to late season fertilizer (4-18-38). Too much fertilizer may cause the bud to pop

– Support the bud using a shingle with a tapered end. The larger end should be placed under the bud. Shingle should be 12 to 18 inches long.

Pest Control – shouldn’t be an issue this year due to the dry weather. If you have bug issues use Marathon.
Fungus control – use Actinovate, Serenade or Forge SP. David Helgeson has found Strike to be very effective
Business meeting:
Previous meeting minutes were approved by Bon Ewing and seconded by Kris Stephens
Treasurer’s report: Sydney Ogilvie reported a balance of $7215.24 in all ECA accounts – approved
She is preparing our annual report notice to be filed with the State of Washington to provide confirmation of our non-profit status
2018 slate of officers: The nominating committee is working on a slate of officers.
2017 Show and banquet dates and locations: Show dates – Nov 2nd – 5th at volunteer park conservatory. Banquet to be held on Nov 16th at Angelo’s in Burien
Volunteer Park report – On Aug 28th several ECA members attended a meeting with David Helgeson at Volunteer park conservatory.
Bob Ewing reported
– Plants can be brought to the staging house as early as Monday
– No charge to public
– Wine and Cheese Friday night meet and greet. Steve Joyner to present slide show.
– See David Helgeson email at end of minutes for specific show details
Show preparation:
– Bob Ewing to locate handbill and update for conservatory location
– 1000 handbills will be available for distribution at next meeting
– Distribute to horticultural societies, garden centers, newspapers, pea patches (Jill and Rich Aldrich have a distribution list)
– Show tags and entry pads were ordered and brought to the meeting. Kris Stephens has them.
– John Harden to order ribbons
– Sue Joyner presented a hand out to be distributed at the volunteer park reception. Need to contact Dave Helgeson to determine the number of participants for copy count.
– Steve Joyner presented a first draft of the slide show to be presented at the volunteer park reception.
– Meeting adjourned at 9 pm
8/29/17 Email correspondence from David Helgeson:
Hi Steve, the following is a re-cap of our meeting on Monday.

Plants and materials for the show can be dropped off into the back greenhouse beginning Monday October 30th between 8am and 3:30pm. And can continue up until 12pm Thursday November 2nd.

Set up for the show will begin Thursday November 2nd from 10am until 4pm the east wing (seasonal house) will be closed to the general public that day for set up.
Judging will commence Friday morning November 3rd from 8am until 12pm when the show will open to the public. The conservatory will close at 4pm to the general public and the FOC will set up for an open house from 5pm to 8pm. Including ECA presentation.
Show open to the general public Saturday November 4th and Sunday the 5th from 10am to 4pm 5. Take down begins Sunday afternoon November 5th from 4pm until 6pm (our goal will be to remove everything from the main building that evening and consolidate the remainder in the back greenhouse for completion the morning of
Monday the 6th)
Final wrap up Monday November 6th
all members plants and show materials need to be cleaned up by 3:30 pm that afternoon as David will have a very tight schedule that week setting up for the Holiday Display!

I think that covers the
general flow of things. Let me know if I’ve forgotten anything. I assume that you will assign volunteers to help with the various aspects of set up. I intend to make myself available to help were needed throughout but may need to attend to my Conservatory duties as needed too. There is plenty of free parking in the park for members helping with the show. Please ask members not to park or block the service road behind the Conservatory, Thanks.
Please feel free to contact
me with any questions, thoughts or ideas between now and then. It would be helpful for me if one or two main folks could be designated for communication purposes to keep confusion to a minimum.

I really am looking
forward to hosting the ECA for this year’s first ever fall chrysanthemum show at the Conservatory!

See you all soon!

Last year’s Trophy winners please bring your clean trophies and give them to Ron Elliot who will prepare them for this year’s Awards Banquet. If you have not given him your trophy yet, please contact Ron to make arrangements.

ANNUAL AWARDS BANQUET: NOTE: We may change the Banquet Date to Wednesday as the only ROOM Available on Thursday would be very tight for 30 people.

Our Annual Banquet is at Angelo’s in Burien, Thursday November 16, 601 SW 153rd, Burien, WA. Come at 6:00 PM for the Social Hour, Dinner at 7:00 PM. Everyone is welcome to enjoy an evening with good friends, good conversation and an excellent dinner.
Put it on your calendar – THURSDAY NOVEMBER 16 th 6-9 PM. Dinner choices this year are beef, Chicken Parmigiana, or a Vegetarian Lasagna. Dinner this year will cost $25.00/person and includes salad, bread, coffee or tea and dessert. A sign-up sheet where you list your meal preference will be available at the October meeting as well as at Furney’s Nursery during the Flower Show. Please pay the $25.00/person dinner cost to Sydney Ogilvie at the October meeting (checks made out to ECA). Please sign up by the end of the show (November 5th). If you have any questions regarding the Banquet, contact Steve. Also: BRING your late maturing blooms for display at the ECA awards dinner.

Plant culture The October meeting will be devoted to the care and how to prepare your mums for the show. Cultural recommendations are attached. With possible rain or showers, consider your sheltering options for your plants.


We’re rapidly approaching the time once again to volunteer & vote for the 2017 ECA Board of Directors/Officers. Recent members are encouraged to fill positions and get involved; seasoned club members will provide assistance. Members will vote on new Officers during our Dec. 8th meeting.

October ECA Newsletter Inputs, To-Dos and others

We will have available the usual assortments of ties, 4’ 6” and 16” ties, LATE Fertilizer, and some soils for the all important top dressing.
You’ll need to continue supplementing you feed with sulphate of Potash.. It’s available in many garden stores in 1-2 lb bags so you can obtain the potash that way.

Show Materials:

Show materials will be available at the October meeting and at the show site. You will need: -Entry forms where you list all the entries you make at the show, -Bloom tags, and a -Show Rules book which guides you as to how and where you can enter your blooms. You might want to start with appendix 2 of the show rules as it is an overview of where you may enter your various blooms. i.e. It starts With Large Exhibitions (Class#1) and shows the various places you can enter #1 blooms. Then it shows the same for #2s, #3s etc. After you understand all the places available for entering your blooms, then you return to the show Catalogue page 7 and start filling out your entry forms and tags.
We will have several copies of the show rules book at the meeting. You should have received a copy of the show rule in the past couple of years, but in case you have misplaced it we will have replacements available.
Show vases are provided at the show site, but you must provide your own waterborne carrier system to get the blooms to the show.
An updated copy of “Chrysanthemum Judging For the ECA Show-2013” has been posted on the web site. You should study this to understand what the judges are looking for when they judge the blooms: hence for instance, if you have petal rot on a petal or two you should remove those petals.
Reclassification of varieties for 2012-2013 per the Ncs:

-Mt. Shasta has been Reclassified from section 1 to section 2–show this year as section 2.
-Keith Luxford has been reclassified from section 2 to section 1–Show this year as a section 1.
-All Fairweathers have been reclassified as section 5. –Show this year as a section 5. However per
published NCS rules, some #5s can be shown as #3S, but will be judged on the standards for #3s
-Connie Mayhew has been reclassified from a #5 to a #2. Since our ECA list of exceptions allows showing
Connies as #2s or #5s nothing changes.
-Lilly Gallon has been reclassified from #5 to #2.—Show this year as either a #5 or a #2.