Seattle, Washington
Steve Joyner, Editor

Hoping everyone had a Merry and Joyous Christmas and Happy New Year Celebration! Looking forward to seeing you Thursday and in the New Year!

NEXT MEETING OF THE ECA – is scheduled for THURSDAY JANUARY 10, 2013 at 7:00 PM at the Seattle Police Athletic Association Office (SPAA) site at 11030 East Marginal Way South, Tukwila.

ECA Meeting Minutes for December 13, 2012

The December 13, 2012 meeting was opened by Vice President John Harden at 7:00 pm. Seventeen members were in attendance. The October 2012 minutes were read and approved.

Chris Brookes reported a treasury balance of $3412.83 with $695.56 in checking, $2610.27 in savings and $107 cash on hand. Our balance is at a 3-year low creating concern over the success of our April 2013 plant sale. Chris read a thank you from Highline SeaTac Botanical Garden for our contribution to them following our August garden tour.

Ronnie Elliott reported that there were 636 blooms with 535 entries in our November show. The quality of blooms made the show especially impressive. The show results were compiled and sent out to members immediately by John Harden – thanks John. Ronnie was commended for his extensive contribution to the NCS Show in Portland.

Steve Backstrom reported a hit on the ECA website from a fellow in the UK requesting Rebecca Walker starts. His wife is THE Rebecca Walker for whom the cultivar was named.

Discussion of “membership” with NCS members at the national convention in Portland revealed NCS’s desire to have ECA a joining force with the national organization. 100% membership crossover remains the point of “standoff”.

Don Stark presented a plan for bringing attention to Furneys Nursery. Furneys has provided us with housing for our spring sale, fall show, and equipment storage throughout the year. Our contact with Furneys is Ken Smith who has been more than accommodating and gracious in providing the space for us. Don moved that a Furneys logo be added to our ECA newsletter with a link between websites. The motion passed and Steve Backstrom, Don Stark and Steve Joyner will work out the details.

Ronnie Elliott presented the slate of officers with a change; addition of newsletter editor.
Officers are: President John Harden
Vice President Richard Blaisdell
Treasurer Mark Ross
Secretary Becky Cox
Newsletter Steve Joyner
Past President Sydney Ogilvie
Cultural Chris Brookes

Trustees: 3 yr term Ronnie Elliott & Nancy Halleen
2 yr term Don Stark & Bob Ewing
1 yr term Jill Aldrich & Larry Mayer

No nominations came from the floor and the slate vote was favorable.

Randal Tanabe presented a video of Mums and Mozart featuring our show blooms of 2012. He also made CDs available to the members.

Ronnie Elliott demonstrated root ball pruning and storing of our stock plants in flats – a space saver.

Thanks Ronnie for treats!

Chris Brookes presented the cultural program starting by encouraging “old timers” to be more involved with new members. This will promote knowledge and success in growing and showing quality plants.

Keeping plants bone dry for six weeks will enhance the dormant period of the plant’s cycle followed by rigorous growth of new shoots in the early spring.

Chris demonstrated the earth pots produced by an Oregon company ($11.72/tray of 72 plugs). He is willing to coordinate orders. The system is now used exclusively by King’s Mums and Chris.

Chris’s Clever Tip: punch a small hole in tags and attach with twistem to main stock of stool to keep the two together.

2013 Club Dues
Members are encouraged to pay dues for 2013. Annual dues are $15/member or $20/couple. Checks made out to the ECA or cash should be given to Mark Ross, ECA Treasurer.

If you wish to continue receiving the Newsletters and “To Do” Lists, you are encouraged to pay your dues for 2013 by January, so you are not dropped from our Database. The ECA By-Laws, Article 1, states that fees are due no later than the March meeting for members who have paid dues in 2012.

Info from Chris Brookes (12-31-12)

• 2013 NW Flower & Garden Show – Handout
Attn: Membership Committee:
We need to include within the show handout, contact details for people seeking more information and possible membership or Mum growing advise from the ECA. What
e-mail contact address / Web site info do you want me to publish? Details required not just for ECA but for other clubs like Portland, Kitsap, Point Grays, etc. Members please advise if you have details for other regional clubs.

• Earthpots – cutting growth trays as used by Kings Nursery 72 count Trays (presented at the Dec. meeting) are going to be substantially cheaper than originally reported as we are arranging for their Washington State representative to drop off the trays somewhere in Seattle. i.e. no freight costs to ECA members. Plus they agree we can buy direct from the manufacturer, so no retail margins are involved. The cost per tray is therefore reduced to $4.00 including sales tax. I took orders for 14 trays at the Dec. meeting and will be bringing 20 to the January meeting. I have six trays unspoken for.

• UK National Chrysanthemum Society: UK membership dues are payable in GB pounds. I will be paying via Paypal, and as with last year, I can combine all member’s payments. The anticipated cost is approx. $25. Please let me know at the January meeting if you wish to be included.

January 2013 To-Do List (new 12-20-12) drs
Success for the upcoming year begins with taking new cuttings; for ourselves, other members
and for the April public plant sale. Taking the cuttings and potting on the newly rooted cuttings are our main January activities. Hopefully we have kept last year’s stools alive and have fertilized them with some hi-Nitrogen fertilizer to get the new shoots growing vigorously.
(Refer to the Dec. 2012 for more details). So somewhere in the January time period we should have produced the strong shoots we need for propagation.

-Cuttings for classes #1 and #3 should mostly be taken in late Dec. and all of January
-Most #2s are started throughout Jan. but Keith Luxford, Ivor Mace, James Bryant and maybe even Connie Mayhew should be started in late Dec. or early Jan. if their stools are far enough along to offer healthy cuttings. Otherwise hold off till the shoots on the pots are growing strong.
-Cuttings of classes #4,5,14&15 are usually started in late Jan. or early Feb.
-Plants to be grown for specimens (11 or more blooms should generally be started earlier to allow time for 1 or 2 more stops. Start them in Dec. if possible.
-Spiders, Quills and Spoons are also good candidate for Jan. starts. Start as many as you can as they are in high demand at the plant sales.

Taking the cuttings:
+When’s the last time you changed your cutting bed? It’s probably time you did. A clean disease free cutting bed might increase your cutting success ratio from 60-70% to 95%.
+The old standard for cutting media was 50% sand and 50% Peat moss; however, I and many others, have recently switched to starting directly in M&R mix. Some of us start directly into
2 ½” plastic cubes. If a higher density of starts in your cutting bed is desired you can go back to rooting in rows in your basic cutting bed. While all the above work well, I’ve started out on a new approach that has the potential for producing stronger and earlier cuttings.
I now recommend a starting media of approximately 50% coarse Green Mountain sharp sand and 50% ProEarth #2 starting mix. I use this mixture both in the starting beds and/or in the cubes etc. The Green Mountain sand comes from crushed stone and has sharp edges and corners. The sharp edges tend to penetrate the cambium layer along the imbedded stem, which promotes development of many more roots on the cutting. The ProEarth media is a bit finer than the M&R mix, has more basic fertilizer plus some long term slow release fertilizer and a basic dose of trace elements. I can have some of the pro earth and the M&R mixes available at the Jan. meeting if you call me and get it ordered. The Green Mountain white sand is now available at many garden stores and at Home Depot. Be sure you get the coarse sand, as there is also a very powdery variety of it available (Not good). If you wish to continue starting in M&R mix, great! But try mixing in a good dose of the Green Mountain sand with it also.

Don’s top Dozen List for 2013
Based on cultivars that have produced well in the last 3 years, here’s my top list of cultivars for classes 1 through 15. All are grown by ECA members and can mostly be found at the plant sales.

1. Connie Mayhew – A creamy yellow #5 or#2 that everyone should grow. It has won, Best Bloom – Open Classes (Ron Elliott, 2011), Best#2, Best vase of 5-(Mike Kubo) etc. It’s been a staple in the club for more than 40 years
2. Lundy & Yellow Lundy – Now the class of the #2s. They are big long lasting reflex blooms and you’ll love the Yellow and brilliant White. Steve Joyner’s Lundy was best in show in 2012
3. Seychelles – A dark pink #2 Reflex that is big, has great form and likes lots of fertilizer. A must have for the Medium Challenge. Don Stark won best in show with it in 2008
4. Alexis & Apricot Alexis – Varieties you’ll love to grow. A staple in the Decorative Challenge.
5. Gigantics are back again – Big in the #1 class, with new stock from England. Regular winners.
6. Fairweather Family – The best group of #3s in our collection. Fills up the Incurved Challenge. Wins best Incurve, best vase of 3 regularly. Colors: Pink, White, Primrose, Peach, White & Salmon.
7. Harry Gee Family – The Gees are back with some great new stock from England. Chris Brookes won Best in show with Amber H. Gee in 2011. It’s a medium to large #1 reflex with nice smooth form. Perhaps the easiest #1 to grow and blooms early enough to always be available for the show.
8. Vienna Waltz – Spider (#10 PU) Long time, one of the best spiders in the club. If you want to grow “Frilly-Dillys” you should have this one. It’s easy to grow, a somewhat heavy feeder and develops large strong blooms.
9. Lava – A new #10 Spoon, bronze/Yellow. Grows strong, puts out strikingly intense yellow to Bronze blooms with very long healthy petals. Bob Ewing Swamped the #10 classes with it a couple of years ago and Stark did the same in 2012 . You will really like this one!
10.White City – A #14 white reflexing intermediate that grows very well for lots of us. Good for use in Late Decorative and / or Early English Challenges.
11. First Light – A #6 Pink cushion, grows profusely in pot or garden and Puts out a plethora of large perfectly formed cushion blooms. Centers tend to be perfectly domed and the whitish florets are uniform and flat.
12. Lancashire Fold – Large perfect form #1 Purple. This one’s a little more difficult to grow but worth a try. It’s a moderate to light feeder and likes to be ignored. If you just keep it growing easily and resist the urge to push, you just might win “Best in Show”. It is one of the most beautiful blooms we have.
DRS 11/29/2012