Smartie Pants or Poo Pants?

035I am really not sure I like this new Dahlia ‘Twyning’s Smartie’. There is something decidedly odd about it. For a start it is a weakling, only about 18″ high and has taken absolutely ages to grow even to that paltry size. And the white splashed flower looks wrong, like it’s a mistake.039

Not all the flowers are splashed either so they are not consistent. If I had been choosing new Dahlia varieties I would have chucked this one in the bin as not fit for purpose.

I suppose it just shows how clever those marketing people are – getting mugs like me to buy the hype and the tuber! Its big brother, Twynings ‘After Eight’ which has dark foliage and white single flowers is still in bud. Let’s hope it reads this and does better!

Dahlia Delight

Dahlia 'Redskin Mix' You know when you thought you had dug up all the Dahlia tubers from last year?017

I dug them up, dried them off and carefully stored them in a frost free place keeping them ‘just moist’ so they wouldn’t dry out, checked every week and carefully brought them back into growth on the heated bench in the greenhouse in April. 161                                              These were the ‘Bishop’s Children’ dahlias grown from seed and much admired in the front ‘hot’ border. 162                                                                                                                After lifting them I dug over the border between the perennials, added compost and left everything to nature which then kindly provided three very cold months with frequent heavy and prolonged frosts. 007                                                                                                         And yet…….up they have come again! The couple of tubers I missed, left in the open ground all winter with no added protection and probably speared with the border fork!

Sometimes I think we try too hard and underestimate a plant’s ability to survive. Of course, I don’t know how many other tubers were left and didn’t!