Gardening Magazine

Dahlias of Infinite Generosity

By Tuckshopgardener @tuckshopgardenr
Dahlias of infinite generosity
The weather may be tending towards autumn, but those dahlias just keep on coming. Every time I look at my dahlia bed, I'm gobsmacked by the amount of flowers which have appeared since I last saw it.  Witteman's Best, the crimson dahlia, is still out there in front in terms of quantity and quality of blooms, and being reliably long stemmed - I really have fallen for that one in a big way.  Rip City, the dark, nearly black, beauty has been lovely, but has, in my experience, a tendency to be a bit short in the stem and hasn't had anywhere near as many flowery explosions as its scarlet cousin.
My forays into flower arranging have also led me to a new favorite color combination which I will aim to replicate more in the garden next year - peaches and ... not cream.... but silver.  Definitely need more silver foliage plants next year.  Lambs Ears are a treat to arrange with and always a hit both in bunches, and in the garden. Variegated pittosporum is also lovely for a pale and delicate foliage, whereas artichoke leaves do big and dramatic very well.

Dahlias of infinite generosity

Honesty 'pennies' are a gorgeous silver counterpoint when you peel off the nasty brown seed casings.

My mission this year is to chop down and remove all viburnums except bodanentse 'Dawn' in an attempt to get rid of viburnum beetle which has decimated all of its hosts except the aforementioned lady.  Maybe they will migrate to her in the absence of any other hosts but it has to be worth a go.  I will miss them as I love their early, neat flowers and their metallic blue berries, but I'm sick of the ragged leaves and the stench of beetle havoc.  So, out they will come this winter, and instead, I plan to plant more variegated or silver foliage shrubs.  I have my eye on variegated corns plants, as that is such a great shrub for dramatic winter stems and also for foliage for cutting.
I do need, however, a replacement evergreen to screen my compost bins if my sizeable viburnum 'Eve Price' is going to be relieved of her sentry duty in that part of the garden.  Suggestions on a postcard please...

Dahlias of infinite generosity

Viburnum Tinus Eve Price, showing early signs of beetle attack. Sorry mate, but you're going....

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