Updated: Oct 29, 2020
You guys, I want to talk a little about crop failures. This year was a hard one for the dahlias. I feel confident that we can classify this year as a dahlia crop failure. I struggled with winter storage and lost many of my tubers to start with, ordered 1,000 seeds and only about 30 germinated, and then we had corn borers running rampant through the sunflowers and dahlias. It was looking like we would have no focal flowers for late summer and early fall. Fortunately, I had ordered calla lilies and they are just beginning to bloom! Combine them with the sunflowers that have escaped the corn borers (thank goodness) and we will have gorgeous blooms to transition into the cooler fall season!
Season changes in our flower fields are different from what you typically expeirence. They usually begin many months before with research, planning, sowing, and maitenance so that you guys can have our gorgeous blooms that next season. We have been hard at work clearing beds that have already bloomed, weeding, starting seeds to extend our season through November, and preparing for all of our fall bulbs that will give us flowers in March. April, and May 2021.
We have sown into plug trays, Katz stock, sweet william, ornamental kale, and a few snapdragons (we'll talk about my struggle with snaps in another post). I am also waiting on a late season seed order to come in the mail. I know, I know, you're all thinking it is late to just be sowing seeds into the beds, but most of the seeds I've ordered are cool flowers that thrive in the colder temperatures of spring and fall. To extend our growing season we use a combination of low tunnels , our small greenhouse, and flowers that love cool seasons. I have ordered our tulips, ranunculus, freesia, and eremus which are set to arrive in October and November. We'll also have another succession of the lovely White Nite sunflowers - you should start seeing these beauties in my designs and at the farmers' markets over the next couple of weeks - that will carry us through fall.