I WISH I had known All of THIS about daffodils 25 years ago!
Keith gave a wonderful presentation, with many suggestions for improving your soil to produce healthy growth for daffodil growers. The correct amounts of minerals in your soil directly affect the size and quality of your bulbs and blooms each year. Keith also offered some tips on bulb planting time to produce quality blooms at the right time for daffodil shows. Last but not least, Keith discussed disease prevention, sanitation of digging instruments, and hot water daffodil bulb treatment.
We are thrilled that Keith & Sandy Kridler were able to visit St Louis and share their experience and knowledge of daffodil growing with members of the Greater St Louis Daffodil Society. Incorporating their ideas and methods into our daffodil growing efforts will definitely lead to better blooms for future daffodil shows.
Keith Kridler, July 2012 Speaker
When the whole Kridler family moved from Ohio to Texas in June of 1964, Keith was just nine years old. His brother Barrie had graduated high school, was REALLY into plants, so they moved a whole truck load of "rescued" Ohio plants and bulbs to Northeast Texas! The family farm in Texas was turned into a mini "botanical gardens" over the next 20 years. By 1984 there were over a million daffodil bulbs naturalized over "Kridler Gardens" acres that HAD to be moved by 1985 when the coal strip mining operations were to take over the surrounding farm lands!
Keith will discuss the problems of climate extremes, as we all need to think long term about maximum and minimum amounts of rainfall & temperature and how these effect our soils and how this ultimately effects quality and timing of daffodil bloom times!
He will also make suggestions on laying out daffodil beds, getting soils tested, amending the soils for optimum growth to produce healthy bulbs for the backyard daffodil grower. What to put in the soil and what NOT to put into or onto the soil! How to get higher production of show quality blooms at the RIGHT time for the shows! Using existing windbreaks but still getting the necessary hours of sunshine to produce blooms!
Keith will then discuss how to pick out areas to quickly plant large numbers of bulbs for those with larger acreage in order to "naturalize" them on the property. How to work with help that knows nothing about planting or digging bulbs and how to quickly get bulbs into the ground in such a way as to be able to quickly get them BACK OUT of the ground with less back ache!
One of the most important topics will be disease prevention, sanitation of digging tools, and how to build a "Red Neck" hot water daffodil bulb treatment tank on the cheap. How test gardens of "Earth Kind" roses and perennial plantings might evolve and include "Earth Kind" daffodil test gardens.