I spent close to 2 hours working down on the Big Garden this morning. It was the perfect morning to be working outside. We had a fairly heavy cloud cover and the sun only made it out here and there for a few minutes. But it was warm and mild, without a breath of wind. My kind of working weather. My work this morning focused on the dahlia patch. I began by cutting of each spent bloom. This took longer than normal as I am spraying my shears between each cut with a bleach solution this year, hoping to stop the possible transmission of any virus. After I was done with that task I went back though the entire garden dis-budding. I also managed to kill about another 20 earwigs in the process. There just doesn't seem to be any end to them this Summer.
This beautiful bloom is an introduction from Ted Kennedy of Hollyhill Dahlias up in Oregon City. It is a gorgeous flame colored pom. It is a brand new release and I love it. It just began to bloom this week.
My "Pooh" collarettes are still blooming up a storm, as are all of the open centered dahlias. This part of the garden is just buzzing with the noise of bees right now.
My "Alpen Cherub" collarettes just began to open this week. When they are perfect, like the bloom above, it is such a pretty dahlia.
This is the second year I have grown "NTAC Shelly" and I still really like it. It has great orchid form. Now if it can still be pumping out the blooms come show season in three weeks.
And I am still loving my new-to-me "Clearview Audrey" plants. I am so glad that I purchased two tubers this winter. This is my second variety to open this year. I read online that it is an early bloomer but continues to produced blooms all Fall. I certainly hope this is true.
Yet another new-to-me variety; "Hollyhill Pixie". This cute Bi-colored miniature ball was released in 2015 and is the only bi-colored miniature ball out there! While this bloom isn't yet fully mature, you can still see how cute it is. It reminds me of gingham fabric a bit.
A "Haley's Dream" bloom. This early bloomer has been going for a few weeks now. It really could use some shade to keep the hot pink color from washing out.
Here is one of my first two blooms of "Kelgai Ann". You can see just a hint of pink in it right now. As the weather cools come September, the pink increases dramatically and the blooms will become much prettier.
Another new-to-me dahlia - "Sandia Charm" a waterlily in a light blend of pink and yellow. I do have to say this first bloom looks very peach/orange to my eye. But its still very pretty and its big.
I am really liking my two plants of "AC Golden Nickles". It has great stellar form and an amazingly bright lemon yellow color. Now I just have to figure out how to keep the cucumber beetles out of the blooms so I can actually take on to a show. They are in love with its bight yellow color too!
Another glowing yellow bloomer; "Sandia Sunbonnet". I first grew this variety last year and really loved it. I kept 4 tubers so hopefully I will have a bloom or two time out right to take to a show this year. It has really nice Anemone form.
My "Embrace" plants are just beginning their first flush of blooms. As always, each bloom is just perfect. You an see why this variety ends up on the head table so often.
Last but not least is my bloom of "Golden Star". While this isn't an exhibition quality variety, I still like it. The bees love its open center and I think its golden star shaped blooms are cheery and joyful.