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Canterbury flower growers gearing up for Daffodil Day

Springston flower grower John Chamberlain and his family at Hadstock Farm are gearing up to supply the Cancer Society with daffodils for the organisation’s annual fresh flower fundraiser this month.

Each year the Cancer Society sells bunches of daffodils to local businesses to help raise funds to enable the organisation to continue supporting local people with cancer. 

John says that Hadstock Farm has been supplying flowers for the Cancer Society for approximately 30 years. This year they also supplied bulbs for the Cancer Society to sell in February and March.

“I think they are wonderful people to deal with,” John says. 

Hadstock Farm has been owned by the Chamberlain family since 1876 and John’s grandson, also named John, is the seventh generation of the family associated with the farm. John’s daughters Courtney and Jess both work on the farm, as do other family members. 

“We started growing tulips in 1937 and then daffodils in the 1950s,” John (senior) says.

“For daffodils, we start picking them at the end of May and then the last of the varieties finish flowering by mid to late October,” Courtney says.

Hadstock Farm supplies most of the daffodils for the Cancer Society’s fresh flower fundraiser for the entire South Island – around 30,000 bunches, according to John’s estimate. 

“Judging the volume required and making sure the daffodils are flowering for that time of the year is a bit of a challenge,” John says. 

“We grow approximately 40 different varieties of daffodils and have imported some earlier flowering varieties to ensure that we have flowers ready in time for August,” John says. 

If you would like to order some fresh daffodils for your business in the Canterbury/West Coast region, contact the Cancer Society on 03 379 5835 or email by 10th August.