Thursday, November 18, 2010

Never say Never

I know, I know, I said there would be no more dahlia blogs.  But really, dear readers, I wanted you to feel smug, while you were warm and dry and reading this, and I wanted you to be able to laugh at us.

So there we were, this afternoon, out in this.  Yes, that is sleet running down our window.  We didn't get any snow sticking to the ground, but apparently just up the hill from us they did.

So Larry and I spent much of this afternoon, in full fisherman type rain gear, slogging through the muck to get the rest of the dahlias out.  We did nearly half, and then came back in to warm up, and then back out we went.  I thought these ones would be easier than yesterday's, they were planted in a hilled row, in some nice fertile rotted horse manure and shavings.  Well they liked it there, as most of the tubers were enormous, and it seemed to take much longer to wash the dirt out.   But now I'm happy to say it is done, or at least they are all out, cleaned off, and are in the garage.  Good thing, we have some -7 overnight temperatures predicted in the next few days.  Here's the wine cellar  dahlia storage room.  I put some of the tubers that I only had one of, on the shelves. There used to be wine bottles resting on those shelves. By the time we are done, those shelves will be hidden by piled up dahlias.

Maybe I could pretend these are weird shaped wine bottles.  
Here's a lovely Blackberry Ice Wine

Or even better, a Burgundy Cactus   Pinot Noir 

Ah, to heck with the wine, I'd rather go on a Caribbean fantasy right about now

And sometimes you just want to know 'who dun it?'

Here's the garage at the moment.  What a mess.  That wheel barrow is full of dahlias.  I don't think the car got in there last winter, and it might be out of luck this winter too.

After we were done, we went upstairs and had a glass of wine, and we were all warm and dry, and laughed at ourselves.

Here's what I see outside the window right now.  That poor, snowy, cold car, shoved out of it's garage by a bunch of dahlias. 


  1. Either way, I still want a garden. It seems like lovely, but cold, fun!


  2. You are in a dahlia nightmare! Just the down side of that plant..they must be dug and stored. Looks like you made it just in time. I would take the Caribbean Fantasy too:)

  3. Ahhhh, the joy of procrastination.

  4. I just want to point out that you can have dahlias and then just leave them in the garden at the end of the season. Most likely they will freeze and rot and you will have to start over next spring. If you are in a mild area with well drained soil, they can survive the winter. So if you are ever offered some dahlia tubers, just plant them and then ignore them if you don't want the hassle of digging them up:)

  5. Is there a secret to storing them? We tried digging up and storing and they were no good in spring. They were dried out and shriveled up. We were very sad :(

  6. Emma Rose - Well that got me googling 'the best way to store dahlias', and there are all sorts of suggestions. I guess it's a fine line between having them too dry (they shrivel) or too wet (they rot). When I stored them in the 'wine cellar' last year, which is an insulated cubby off the garage, that juts under the stair landing in the family room, it seemed to work really well. I might have lost the odd tuber, I can't remember, but otherwise they were in great shape. The garage is not heated, but is attached to the house, so I guess the conditions were close to ideal. The cellar is not closed off from the rest of the garage, there is just a board leaning in front of the opening, but since it is leaning it is far from air tight, so there is a bit of air circulation. You have a similar climate to us, so what works for me should work for you:)
    One year when I didn't have as many tubers, I just left them in the green house, on the soil on the floor, and covered them with a some old feed bags. When it got colder I threw some old blankets over to keep them from freezing. I think I lost a few that were in spots were the soil got wetter, and they rotted, but quite a few survived.
    I can't be bothered with packing them in vermiculite or peat moss like some suggest,(takes up too much room) and trying to get one into a pantyhose leg, well that would be one heck of a struggle, most of mine are huge.
    Here's a link to the story in our local paper. He suggests wrapping them in newspaper.

  7. That is a lot of tubers! I think I would rather have that room full of wine! and a trip to the Caribbean as well.
    You got it done just in the nick of time. Congratulations!

  8. Got to see via photo what you had described once. Thank You. Just an exclamation re how many dahlia's


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