Archive for October, 2019

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 2019 Newsletter:


Seattle, Washington


MEETING OF THE ECA – is scheduled for THURSDAY OCTOBER 10, 2019 at
7:00 PM at the Seattle Police Athletic Association Office (SPAA) site at 11030 East Marginal Way South, Tukwila. We are meeting in thermal south classroom the right as you come in the driveway. This is an important meeting as we develop plans for our annual mum show and confirm plans for our award banquet.

73rd Annual ECA show timeline
Tuesday October 29th – 10am VPC show set up  – Volunteers needed
Wednesday, October 30th – 10am VPC show set up – Volunteers needed
Thursday, October 31st – 10am Chrysanthemum entry
Blooms can be taken to VPC earlier in the week if need be.
Friday, November 1st 8am – 12pm Show Judging – Judging assistant volunteers needed
Friday, November 1st 12pm – 4pm 73rd ECA Chrysanthemum show at VPC
Friday, November 1st 6pm – 8pm Friends of the conservatory reception
Saturday, November 2nd 10am – 4pm 73rd ECA Chrysanthemum show at VPC
Sunday, November 3rd 10am – 4pm 73rd ECA Chrysanthemum show at VPC
Sunday, November 4th 4 pm – 6 pm – show clean up – Volunteers needed
Thursday, November 14th Awards banquet at Angelos in Burien

ECA Volunteers are needed during the show to answer questions and represent our organization.

ECA volunteers are also needed for setup, cleanup and friends of conservatory reception

ANNUAL FLOWER SHOW The E.C.A. annual flower show will be held Friday November 1nd, from Noon – 4 PM and Saturday November 2nd 10 AM – 4 PM & Sunday, November 3rd from 10 AM- 4 PM at the Volunteer Park Conservatory, 1400 East Galer Street in Seattle.

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.)

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.

Our Annual Banquet is at Angelo’s in Burien, Thursday November 14, 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 14th 6-9 PM. Dinner choices this year are beef, Chicken Parmigiana, or a Vegetarian Lasagna. Dinner this year will cost $28.00/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 VPC during the Flower Show. Please pay the $28.00/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 3rd). If you have any questions regarding the Banquet, contact Steve. Also: PLEAES remember toBRING 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 2020 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. 12th meeting.

October ECA Newsletter Inputs, To-Dos and others

We will have available the usual assortments of ties, 4’ 6” and 16” ties, and LATE Fertilizer. If you need any soil, 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.

Draft Minutes of ECA Meeting September 12, 2019:

In attendance: Rich Aldrich, Jill Aldrich, David Rynes, Heidi Garman, Sue Joyner, Erika Harris, Gerald, Quintua, Steve Joyner, Ron Elliott, Cathleen Williams, Sydney Ogilvie, June Kubo

Cultural Notes Care and feeding of chrysanthemums during bloom stage Water sparingly – don’t water until the leaves start to flag, feed lightly using the late season fertilizer (4/18/35) the club has available for this season. Top dress to promote root growth.  Yellow foliage can be due to over watering, soil PH, lack of nutrients, disease

Discussed how to take the buds and how many laterals to carry on to the final bloom stage. 

Business Meeting

Treasurers report: $8386.29

Sydney reported that she had paid the web host $120 for the web host to host our website for another year.

1) Old Business

a) ECA shirts – 

Steve Joyner -shirts are on order will have them at next meeting

one time set up fee – $75

Polo Shirts $29+$6 embroidery fee =$35 total

Long Sleeved poly/cotton button up shirt $34+$6 embroidery fee =$39 total

ECA will cover the set-up fee.  Members will pay for shirts and embroidery fee

Discussed using the clover credit card cube to make shirt purchases and practice using the machine.  Those present expressed desire for hooded sweatshirts and a yellow Connie Mayhew on the embroidery

b) Trophies – Sue presented her ideas for the trophies listed below

Incurve Challenge   

Garden Variety Challenge

Best vase of 3 incurves 

c) Replating trophies –Heidi reported that she has contacted several replating companies but the work we need done is not a large enough order.

d) VPC greenhouse steps – Steve Joyner reported that the city of Seattle department of engineering is developing plans for the back steps at the conservatory.  They are aware the FOS and ECA are willing to contribute funds for the stairs

e) Updating ECA Web page – Sue Joyner and her son Dan have administrative privileges and will start working on an updated web page 

f) Volunteer park Friends of the conservatory is looking for gardeners that would like to teach a workshop or lead a lecture on a topic of their choice! FOC typically have lectures / workshops the first Tuesday of the month for up to twenty students in one of their potting sheds behind the conservatory for members and the general public to attend for about 1-2 hours. Rachel Bennett, FOC vice president [email protected] is the contact.  She wants to know if ECA has any interest in participating as a workshop presenter. 

ECA consensus is that we would be able to provide several presentations throughout the year.  But not present every month throughout the year.  Sue Joyner to report back to Rachel.

Fall Show preparations

Filling out the entry forms – Mark Ross shared how to compete the bloom entry forms for the show


a) Erika Harris brought 1000 ½ page show flyers for distribution to nurseries and garden centers throughout the pacific northwest

b) periodical/newspaper advertising – Jill and Rich to reach out to publications and media for show advertisement

c) Media (TV) coverage for ECA fall show – would like to see TV coverage at the show – Ron Elliott to make this contact

Pictures & ID’s for spring plant sale:  Heidi Garman will take pictures

Sign-up sheets for show tasks – show task sign-up sheets were distributed so people could sign up for show tasks

Show entry numbers – Sydney and Mark will have show entry number available for next meeting

April 192020 was proposed as the spring public plant sale date – need to verify that date with VPC.  Want to put the spring plant sale date on the plant sale interest cards that will be distributed during the show.

ECA members were asked to return their trophies at the October meeting so they can be cleaned and updated for the show awards banquet

New Business

Please welcome new member – Cathleen Williams  [email protected] 408-838-6857.  She is enthusiastic about gardening and growing mums!

Bob Ewing passed away on Friday, Aug 30, 2019 due to an aggressive bladder or prostate cancer that was identified mid August 2019.  At the point it was identified the cancer had metastasized throughout his internal organs.   At the time of his death he was staying with his daughter Linda and on Hospice care.  His memorial service is scheduled for Saturday September 21, 2019 at 11 am St Columbas Episcopal church 26715 Military Rd S, Kent, WA 98032

Flowers from ECA will be ordered for the service.ECA 2019 Calendar

Meeting Dates:  All 

Thursday, January 10, 2019   7 pm – 9 pm Thursday, July 11, 2019 7 pm – 9 pm  

Thursday, February 14, 2019 7 pm – 9 pm Thursday, August 8, 2019 7 pm – 9 pm

Thursday March 14, 2019     7 pm – 9 pm Thursday, September 12, 2019 7 pm – 9 pm

Thursday, April 11, 2019     7 pm – 9 pm Thursday, October 10, 2019  7 pm – 9 pm

Thursday, May 9, 2019     7 pm – 9 pm Thursday, November 14, 2019 – Banquet

Thursday, June 13, 2019       7 pm – 9 pm Thursday, December 12, 2019 7 pm – 9 pm

Trustees Meeting:

Saturday, January 5, 2019 10 AM – NOON

Cutting University (VPC):

Saturday, February 16, 2019   10:00 am -1 pm Confirmed with VPC

Club Plant Sales:

Thursday, March 14, 2019 7 pm – 9 pm

Thursday, April 11, 2019 7 pm – 9 pm

Public Plant Sale:

Saturday, April 13, 2019  10:00 am – 2 pm Confirmed with VPC

2019 Evergreen Chrysanthemum Show: Confirmed with VPC

Set up: Tuesday, October 29, 2019  

Wednesday, October 30, 2019  

Thursday, October 31, 2019  

Judging:  Friday, November 1, 2019     8 am – Noon  

Friends of the conservatory open house: Friday, November 1, 2019   6 pm to 8 pm

Public Show:  Friday, November 1, 2019     Noon to 4 pm  

          Saturday, November 2, 2019     10 am – 4 pm  

          Sunday, November 3, 2019       10 am – 4 pm  

Clean up:  Sunday, November 3, 2019    4 pm – 6 pm  


Thursday, November 14, 2019  6 pm Location to be determined