Canadian Cancer Society's Daffodil Month at risk due to early season

Another early daffodil season is putting the Canadian Cancer Society's fundraising efforts at risk.

Daffodil grower says it's too early to tell if the early season is a permanent change

Flora Farms owner Nick Warmerdam picks daffodils at his farm in Abbotsford, B.C. (CBC)

Another early daffodil season is putting the Canadian Cancer Society's fundraising efforts at risk. 

April is Daffodil Month, during which the cancer society sells fresh daffodils to businesses and individuals across Canada to raise money. 

"The fact that we will not be selling daffodils into April certainly is a big concern for us," said Greg Douglas, the society's fundraising director for B.C. and Yukon. 

Douglas says daffodil sales have been a mainstay of the organization's fundraising for the past decade. 

Greg Douglas, the Canadian Cancer Society's fundraising director for B.C. and Yukon, says an early daffodil season is changing the organization's fundraising efforts. (CBC)

To counteract the early blooms, Douglas says the society is encouraging supporters to purchase flowers sooner and will move toward encouraging them to purchase a pin later in April.

He says the Canadian Cancer Society has discussed moving their traditional date, but it's not likely in the short term.

"The public knows that April is Daffodil Month and that's the month that they can support the society," he said.

Season hard to predict

Flora Farms owner Nick Warmerdam supplies the Canadian Cancer Society with daffodils. He says it's definitely been an earlier season than usual. 

"We had a really early start this year with the daffodil," he said. "We finished picking at the same time we usually start picking."

Warmerdam says daffodils start growing as soon as temperatures get above 6 C, and there aren't many good-quality varieties that bloom later. 

He says it's too early to tell if an early start to the season will become more permanent. 

"The local weather is really hard to predict," he said. "It's really hard to know what it's going to be like next year."

Warmerdam says daffodils bloom on their own schedule, and there's not much farmers can do to encourage them to bloom at a different time. 


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