Daffodils for Brighter Days
by John Hirshboek
Daffodillion introduced their “Daffodils for Brighter Days” logo when Covid tragically became part of our lives two years ago. Most of us began our masking and quarantining that spring, but Newport’s over one million daffodils (a “daffodillion”) still exploded in a profusion of bright yellow glory, as they have each April.
Seeing the daffodils emerge, after a winter of Covid’s doom and gloom, brought a symbol of hope. They promised us brighter days ahead.
Buttressed with an outpouring of support and sentiment to continue our efforts, we sought donations to purchase more bulbs to give away in the fall of 2020 and again in 2021. Our community responded, both with contributions and then “sold-out” bulb giveaways each October.
As a result, an additional 100,000 Dutch Master bulbs have been purchased, given away and planted these past two years – “our gift to the street” as our founder Ronald Lee Fleming proclaimed. Now, with a grand total of over 1,200,000 daffodils ready to bloom this April, we can rightfully claim our title as The Daffiest City in New England.
Daffodillion and Newport in Bloom
There’s other exciting news! With our shared mission of enhancing the beauty of our neighborhoods, we’ve joined with Newport in Bloom to add “flower power” to our fundraising and beautification efforts. They’re the enthusiastic volunteers that place and maintain the decorative flower baskets on our downtown’s historic lamp posts, hold an annual plant sale and garden competitions and a “must attend” award ceremony. (Visit Newportinbloom.org for more information on all they do).
Today, our “brighter days ahead” expression captures the universal hope and anticipation that the worst of the pandemic is behind us.
Let the flowers bloom!
John Hirshboek is one of the “founding fathers” of Daffodillion.
Daffodils for brighter days
There are over 50 species and approximately 13,000 varieties of daffodils. Newport Daffodillion distributes the “Dutch Master” variety of daffodil bulbs to residents for planting throughout the city each fall.
“It’s kind of a signal flower,” said John Hirschboeck, project director of Daffodillion. “Spring is just such a special time to be outside.”
Daffodils represent joy, mirth and hope in many different cultures. In the United States, it is known as… CONTINUE READING…
This article on daffodils was written by journalist Danielle Rose for Newport This Week:
Interested in more Daffy Days? Check out these events, running all April long.
- April 16: Newport Rhode Races marathon, half marathon and 5K dashes. Register online.
- April 24: Audrain Automotive Museum’s first “Cars & Coffee” of 2022 throughout downtown Newport, featuring daffodil-decorated vehicles. Enter online.
- Tour de Jonquilles Bike Ride and Private Garden Tour
- The Easter Bunny Goes Daffy at the Shops on Long Wharf
- Jane Pickens special screening of Tim Burton’s award-winning film, “Big Fish”
- Curated daffodil tour and lecture at the Green Animals Topiary Garden
See the full schedule on the Daffodil Days website.
Daffodil flower essence$5.00
Christine L McCulloughMarch 30, 2022 at 11:46 am
This is a delightful event(s)! My family particularly enjoys the daffy car parade! I agree with John, when , during the pandemic lockdowns, the daffodils bloomed, as they always do, and adde hope and brilliance to the emerging Spring!