A Year Ago Today15th October 2016
First Impression Flowers28th February 2017
26th February 2017
Dahlia’s are a Marmite flower, but with so much variety of shape and colour, I think they’re more like a Pick n’ Mix sweets flower. Read my championing of new flowers blog here where I get a bit carried away with how no big-wigs in the flower magazine game assume that us young flower-lovers read them, and constantly refer to plants we’ve never been introduced to as a ‘reintroduction’- very annoying. http://meadowfolk.co.uk/first-impression-flowers/
Anyway, Dahlia time! These are my favourites that I grew in 2016:
Café au Lait – I worked with these in the Florist shop and fell in deep dreamy white chocolate, honey, salted caramel love. Huge blooms of varying colours, so you have to be ruthless with taking buds off to allow for fewer but bigger flowers.
Preference – Apricot and peach concoction, with a dash of coconut milk. Like a fancy cocktail. Really great performer, flowered from June right till October, lovely strong, long, dark stems and really long vase life too. Very easy to match with any colour combo, I cannot stress how wonderful this Dahlia is!
Crème de Cassis – does what it says on the tin. The petals on the front of this Dahlia are beautiful pale creamy mauve, and the back ones are a rich cassis colour. Amazing display and SO many flowers. Not the tallest and the stems were quite thick but I’ll grow them again because they are darn cool.
Wizard of Oz – My mum’s favourite. Little pinky white balls of cute. Like sugared Bonbons. Or candy floss. Long flowering and a long vase life. Win win! I feel like I’m writing the blurbs for horse racing.
Melody Harmony – Like a drumstick lollypop; pink and white striped petals on dark black stems and foliage. SO delicious. Not a very long flowering time, and on very short stems. But this one has stolen my heart and I will forever grow it just to see it’s pretty face for a few weeks. Next time I’ll water and feed it more to see if that makes the stems longer!
Magenta Star – Majestically tall stems, black leaves and the brightest pink flowers I’ve ever seen. If you think black and pink is sexy, then this is your thang. Not the longest lasting cut flower, but very cheerful, and if you cut stems with buds on they’ll open in your vase at home.
Totally Tangerine – this is a funky one, orange petals with a deeper orange puff. Slugs loved it. So did I. But for cutting? Not great, because the slug issue meant most of the petals had holes in them. If I had a garden that wanted orange in it I would plant this though, just for the pure fun of them.
Blue Bayou – Totally Tangerine’s older brother. Or moody sister. Pale lilac petals with a deep cassis red puff. Really lovely, and good fun, but again not a great one for cutting. Took a while to get going too, but very much worth it when it made an appearance.
Ivanetti – Red, red (chocolatey) wine. Photos don’t really do the colour justice, which isn’t great if you’re a florist. If you love dark coloured flowers like me, then this is your gal, or boy. Lots of perfectly geometrical ball shaped wine coloured flowers, on very strong long stems.
La Recoleta - Oh YES. If you’re a vampire. Amazingly rich red with black, totally gothic. Totally wicked. I wont be growing these to sell again, as it takes a really special type of cool person to want these in their house. But I’ll be growing them for my brand new tradition of a hosting a Halloween dinner party. Which my boyfriend is still not taking seriously as a thing. But if I’m growing flowers specifically for it, then it is the most actual of things.
Very good Dahlia tuber suppliers:
Rose cottage plants have a great selection: http://www.rosecottageplants.co.uk/
Withypitts doesn’t just have a funky name, they have a huge supply of different varieties: https://www.google.co.uk/search?q=withypitts+dahlias&oq=whithypit&aqs=chrome.1.69i57j0l4.6677j0j4&sourceid=chrome&ie=UTF-8
Halls of Heddon do some really unusual varieites that I’ve not come across anywhere else: https://www.hallsofheddon.com/
And I’ll be uploading ‘how to grow’ info soon, as Dahlia time is nearly upon us!