Tuesday, September 26, 2017

Dahlia Season is Here!

American Dawn and Semi-Cactus Dahlia ( Magic Moment)
 Happy Fall Ya''ll! As we transition from late summer to autumn my heart is happy. Dahlias season is here ( FINALLY). At the same time, my heart is also heavy for those who have been effected by the recent hurricanes in the south and the Caribbean. I pray they will get the supplies, relief and care that is needed to rebuild their communities, and ultimately their lives. The human spirit always prevails in times like these and it does my heart good to see all the outreach that is happening for those who are suffering such great losses right now. 

Because of these storms, many florists have had to scurry to find flowers for weddings and events due orders from wholesalers being cancelled. The upside is that more florists are reaching out to their local flower farmer to source flowers and making new connections for the future. I've been able to personally help a few florists out this past week and the New England Farmer Florist Connection Facebook group has been great for helping florists in the network find flowers in a pinch.

Here in coastal New England, we have been on a tropical storm warning for several days from hurricane Maria. We've had high surf and minimal beach erosion and not much flooding. Compared to the destruction that has happened elsewhere, it's hardly worth mentioning, but it has had an effect on the dahlias. Just when peak bloom time hit, the rain and wind arrived too! Gr.

I've been harvesting like mad to save them! I have some

   new varieties to share with you that are perfect for cutting and floral design. 

 Let me introduce you to American Dawn.

American Dawn
 She's the most beautiful shade of soft coral with pink and purple undertones, making her a lovely companion to deep purples, light pink, yellow and deep burgundy reds too. She's no wall flower either. She throws out blooms right and left.

I found last year that I didn't have enough yellow in the garden for cut flowers.To me, there's nothing that says summer more than a big yellow flower in a bouquet.  Sunflowers are a natural, but they only bloom once and in a small scale growing situation I've learned it's just not a wise use of space when you're going for maximum blooms. 

Dahlias are very giving sending out bloom after bloom until the first frost. If you're growing for weddings or selling to floral designers, you may not sell out of a bright yellow but this little lady is great in arrangements and farmers market mixes.

American Sun 
American Sun has long and strong stems making her ideal for cut flowers. I'm kind of in love with this pink and yellow theme. Yellow is like the sun. It makes everything near it shine!

Boom Boom Red ( below ) is the perkiest little pom pom dahlia ever!

She just fires out blooms left and right. I can hardly keep up with it! 
If I was growing on a larger scale I would definitely include this one. It comes in yellow as well. While red and yellow aren't currently popular wedding colors, the long stems and mid-sized blooms make this variety ideal for market bouquets or event work. 

These easy ball jar bouquets went to a ladies fundraiser luncheon. 

Lastly, I created this mock bridal bouquet with white dinner plate dahlias ( Fleurel ), Magic Moment, Semi Cactus, Arabian Night ( burgundy) yellow lisianthus, white lisianthus, sedum joy, forsythia foliage and fern leaf pine scented geranium. Kinda made me want to say, I do all over again! 

I hope you all enjoy this turn of the seasons. It's always bittersweet for me, but spring is only six months away and I'm already planning for next years cut flower gardens.

Stay tuned for my next posting. We have some fun things in the works for Farmer~ Florists here in New England! 


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