Planting, Painting and Poetry: Dahlias

We planted 28 Dahlias this weekend. There were so many varieties and colors, I had to make a schematic to keep up with them all. Part way into the process I realized I could do it with watercolors, and so I transferred the image to watercolor paper and had a try at it. (This is just the front yard!)

So far, I’m really enjoying my watercolor class. We’re still getting used to our brushes and learning how to mix colors. It’s a lot of fun and very relaxing.

Here are some of our previous Dahlias. They have huge blooms and grow quite large. They are fabulous. If you’ve never planted them, give them a try! You’ll love what you see. Just one or two of these cut flowers in a little bowl will liven up your table all through summer. But watch out for earwigs–they LOVE Dahlias and will eat them up and fall off the petals and onto your table. Make sure to choose some system to keep them off your flowers and then continue to maintain them. Also, cut off your spent blooms–they attract the earwigs.

And here is the symbolism behind Dahlias from the little book, The Bouquet: Containing the Poetry and Language of Flowers.

Symbolism: Elegance and Dignity.

I loved thee for thy high-born grace,
Thy deep and lustrous eye;
For the sweet meaning of thy brow,
And for thy bearing high.
I loved thee for thy stainless truth,
thy thirst for higher things;
For all that to our common lot
A better temper brings.
And are they not all thine—still thine?
Is not thy heart as true?
Holds not thy step its noble grace?
Thy cheek its dainty hue? –
And have I not an ear to hear?
And a cloudless eye to see?
And a thirst for beautiful human thought,
That first was stirred by thee?

2 responses to “Planting, Painting and Poetry: Dahlias

  1. I love the idea of painting your schematic. It gives a nice visual to your intent. And what a perfect way to bring art into your life, extending your gardens to the page 🙂

  2. emilydickinsonsgarden

    It’s helpful to see what it will look like someday….if summer ever comes. There’s always a few bulbs that don’t come up, too–possible eaten by the voles–so it’s nice to know what should be coming up when a month or so has elapsed and my memory fades. Did you get your bulbs planted?

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