I’ll always remember my first time walking into a daffodil show. As the door opened, cool air laden with the smell of daffodils rushed to greet me. Once inside, hundreds of beautiful flowers in an amazing array of colors and shapes stared me in the face. A list of varieties I liked quickly filled the back page of the show schedule guiding my way through the exhibits. Perfect-looking blooms seemed everywhere, but how could I discover which ones might also be worth a try in the garden? Here are some strategies that work pretty well for me:
- Begin by looking in the sections of the show where three stems of the same flower are required for each entry. The luxury of using up three quality blooms in one display may signal a strong, floriferous grower that gives the exhibitor lots of flowers to choose from.
- Look in the single stem classes for multiple entries of the same cultivar. When there are three or more, often times the show committee will create a separate sub-class for them. Any variety that you notice lots of different people growing successfully will most likely have some garden value.
- Those with budgetary limitations should search the “Small Growers” section. Here you get the novice exhibitors, most a few blue ribbons and a few years away from spending a lot for any one bulb.