Dahlias: Long Live the Queens of the Field

If you’ve been snagging market bouquets from us on Saturdays, you’ve probably noticed dahlias starting to sneak their way into your mixed bouquets over the last few weeks.

For whatever reason–well, I know the reasons, but explaining them involves complaining a lot about the weather, and you have better things to read about–the dahlias have taken their sweet time maturing this season.

But now, behold!  The dahlia, in all her glory.

Dahlias are wonderful flowers that come in a variety of sizes, shapes, and colors.  They also possess a remarkable ability to make people lose their $#!+, including me.

Dahlia fever.  It’s a thing.

First are the ball-shaped dahlias, which dazzle the beholder with their mesmerizing fractal petal patterns.  These range in size from large 4″ balls down to adorable, itsy-bitsy 1″ pom poms.

Next are the artsy dahlias, which have more specific groupings, but I’ll call them the “decoratives.”  These free-spirited dahlias have romantic wavy or curving petals, and some open to a waterlily type shape.

Most impressive are the show-stopping dinnerplate dahlias.  These dahlias feature oversized blooms the size of a toddler’s head, sometimes bigger!  Depends on the toddler.

Last, but not least, are the single-flowered and anemone-flowered dahlias.  I don’t grow too many of these varieties, but the ones I do grow are very special accent flowers.  These dahlias are joyful-looking, and the fluffy ones are downright adorable.

Dahlias grow from sweet-potato-like tubers.  Here in New York, we have to dig up our dahlia tubers each fall and store them safely in a non-freezing place for the winter.

To spruce up your own garden, we’ll have dahlia tubers for sale this winter and next spring.  I’m hoping we’ll be able to offer many more varieties than last year, including most if not all of the varieties pictured here 🙂

Dahlias!  We’ll have ’em today at market.  For you cool cats out there who are out of farmer’s market range, please enjoy some more photos to sate your dahlia appetite.

This is an excerpt from the Sea Change Farm newsletter.

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