2018-06-07 / From The Garden

Daffodillion a Bloomin’ Success

John Hirschboeck, organizer of Daffodillion, looks back at this year’s event and looks ahead to Newport reaching one million daffodils.

So now that the daffodil blooms have faded, what’s next for Daffodillion? Right now, the important thing is not to cut or mow the daffodil leaves until early June. You can remove the dead blossoms, but the leaves should remain to rejuvenate themselves for next year. If they’re cut back too early, they’ll miss generating the nutrients they need to return next spring.

That was quite a show the daffodils put on during April. Where were the major new Daffodillion plantings? Hopefully everyone got to enjoy the additional thousands of daffodils planted across from Easton’s Beach, Cliff Walk, Ballard Park, the train station on America’s Cup and Farewell Avenue and at St. Peter’s. But just as important are the many small plantings seen at homes and businesses throughout Newport. I was told that we now have more daffodils per square foot than any other city in New England. I hope this continues. Everyone should have daffodils in their yards.

How was the fifth annual Newport Daffodil Days Festival received? My totally biased opinion was that it was the best yet. Thanks to the efforts of our volunteers and sponsors, we had 20 daffy events throughout town enjoyed by residents and visitors alike. Our local merchants stepped up and did a terrific job decorating their storefronts and creating “daffy deals” for those who were wearing their daffodil pins. All the proceeds from the festival now go to purchase more bulbs to give away and plant this fall.

What is the significance of the two yellow chairs in the daffodil field across from Easton’s Beach? Someone decided to create a piece of public art and place it in the daffodil field. This might be something to explore next spring, public art among the daffodils?

What’s the count now? How close is Newport to a “Daffo-dillion?” There were 687,500 daffodils in bloom. That means we need to plant another 312,500 this fall and we’ll all become “Daffodillionaires.” With the help of our bulb-planting machine and additional fundraising, I’m cautiously optimistic we can reach our goal.

Who will get to plant the one millionth bulb? We’ve invited the governor to plant at a spot reserved right in front of City Hall.

Will you be having another free bulb giveaway this fall? Yes! This will be our sixth annual giveaway. We’ll have 40,000 bulbs, two dozen to a bag, to hand out. That’s a retail value of over $15. Mark your calendars [for] Saturday, Oct. 20, at Easton’s Beach from 9 to noon.

How can people find out more about volunteering to help planting in the fall and supporting Daffodillion? Simply go to our website at Daffodillion.com. Sign up and you’ll learn when and where we’ll be planting.

NTW Staff

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