San Angelo, TX - Plans are already underway for next year's international symposium of the Waterlily and Water Gardening Society.
Members will be coming to San Angelo to see one of the largest collections of waterlilies anywhere in the world.
Carolyn McEnrue continues her special report on Ken Landon.
"When I was 17 -- I built a pool in the backyard in the land of enchantment...in New Mexico because it was dirt (laughs)."
And that's how Ken Landon's lifelong love of growing and creating waterlilies started.
"...And you can have a lily and sit and watch them open and close -- there is a lot of peacefulness about 'em."
When his family moved to Fort Worth -- he bought a new lily and put it in the garage -- in a kiddie pool.
"Left the cars out -- put it in a kiddie pool and I wasn't really paying attention because I was busy building the new pond and after two days the fragrance of that waterlily filled the garage...and the flower...that's when -- when it clicked within me."
He started his collection at Civic League Park -- in the old rose garden -- about 30 years ago. All these years later -- it's the wild lilies that he collects and preserves that have people coming to him.
"Do you ever get calls from South America?.....es -- they're wanting stuff that maybe they lost"...
Ken is in the hall of fame of the International Waterlily and Water Gardening Society. He was a founding member and his collection is well known.
"We have some that are extinct like Zambique Enthis...and then when you get a collection you can trade -- and you can say okay -- I want that -- you want this so there you go -- and we'll trade."
IWGS members will be traveling to San Angelo for the group's conference next year to see one of the largest wild species collections anywhere...and many of the beautiful hybrids he's created from them.
"You have to have the species or the wild ones to make the pretty hybrids....internationally -- we're probably three right now --- I'm number three in the world....and we'll be number one after next year's conference with the IWGS coming here."
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