What I am talking about are are all the gorgeous Cottage Garden plants. The ones that can make great additions to a bouquet, add superb colour and structure and the butterflies and bees adore. Plants like Chrysanthemum, Echinacea, Salvia, Asters, Yarrow, Shasta daisies, Dahlias and others.All of these plants go into some form of dormancy during the Winter, Echinacea with its almost tuberous root system goes fully dormant , Dahlias which are tubers and are fully dormant, Salvias need a good trim back, as do Asters, Yarrow and Daisies.From now on is a great time to start planning what you’d like your garden to look like during late Spring through to Autumn. I will be dividing and potting on most of these listed plants over the next few weeks. I have just divided a gorgeous Yellow Kniphofia or Poker called ” Candlelight. ( native to Africa). I have a red hot poker variety that is flowering right now and another which flowers in late spring to summer.I have recently divided Purple and white Asters (see picture). I already have most of these plants for sale here on this site but will begin to list them individually for sale.All of these plants can be mailed across Australia except NT, WA and TAS.
On the 29th May the Tranquil Garden Nursery will again be officially open to the public from 9am till 12pm and every Saturday. The Nursery is unofficially open now as I set up a Produce stall showcasing lovely locally grown produce that includes avocados, Macadamias, garlic, citrus ( including lemons, limes, Seville Oranges very soon for making the famous Seville Marmalade).
Come and visit and see the wonderful Autumn colours here and at other locations on the Bulga Plateau.
The Tranquil Garden Nursery will also be supplying plants for a wonderful Local Market at The Bulga Hall ” Grounded” may be the name for the upcoming market that begins probably in July. It will be held on the second Sunday of every Month.
There are accommodation options up here including B & B s, Camping with youcampau and Hipcampau too, our local Community Centre can be booked for accommodation also. See Accomodation in Elands/ for more information regarding accommodation bookings.. The Visitors Tab on Elands Hub takes you to Accommodation options.
From Taree drive to Wingham and follow the brown tourists signs through Marlee, Bobin and the last section is dirt road newly opened after flood damage so unfortunately a tad rough. Please drive carefully and watch for wildlife. From Wingham it is about a 45 minute drive.
The other option is through Killabakh, this road is a more challenging drive with more narrow sections but is in good condition as recently graded and yes dirt road again. When you leave Wingham instead of turning left after bridge over railway turn right. The road will take you past Machins Sawmill, Through Killabakh and offers some stunning scenery. Turn left into Colling road before Comboyne.
The Tranquil Garden Nursery is at 80 Glenwarrin Rd and is set behind a large wooden fence. Signs on the Saturday will make it very clear where we are.
I realized yesterday just how many seed pods I have of Calla lilies after tidying up in the Calla Lily area where I have massive pots full of giant bulbs. The wonderful bees will have cross pollinated these beauties and I have other colours such as Picasso which didn’t seed but its pollen certainly would have been transferred. In all there are white, deep purple, yellow, orange as well.
I am going to start processing the seeds then I though it would be lovely for them to be grown by other people as it is quite easy and I have quite a lot.
So today I will start to offer them for sale. I will create the listing this morning.
Here is what you need to do once you receive your Calla lily seeds.
They will arrive in a paper, plastic bag with a small amount of peat/ soil or Sphagnum moss.
the seeds will be quite moist and ready to plant into a well drained soil mix such as a seed starting mix. Simply mostly fill a small pot almost full with the soil and moisten soil well with water. then press a few seeds into the top of each pot and make sure they are just covered with soil.
Keep the pots moist. you may like to cover the pots with a plastic bag or use a propagation tray that comes with a lid. The seeds will take up to four months to germinate, some of mine have taken longer. I have successfully grown loads of Calla lilies this way.
Once they have germinated and grown for a year in the pot they can be potted into bigger pots. The dormant plants will die down over Autumn and regrow in Spring.
I cant wait to see the colours the new seeds will produce. They take a couple of years or so to get to flowering size but the wait has been worth it. I have some seedlings from an Orange Calla, Purple and yellow etc that are growing well too.
Alternatively I will be offering Calla lily dormant bulbs for sale also which I will be processing soon. Watch this space.
Storing Dahlias over winter
Over winter Dahlias are in dormancy. This means the leaves and stems dry and shrivel. ( They make great kindling when completely dry).
Yes Dahlias can be left in the ground over winter in snow free areas but I dig most of mine as it can be really wet. The soul here in some parts is very claggy. So if your soil.is not really well drained I’d recommend digging.
Care needs to be taken to dig slowly to avoid tubers breaking badly.
Trim stems to perhaps about 5 to 10 cm and if soil is not too claggy you could leave on clumps. I tend not to divide clumps if I am going to store them as they winter better.
They are best stored in a dry and fairly well ventilated area, it’s a good idea to check them every few weeks as any gooey tubers can be removed.
I store mine in large pots, shade cloth, chaff bags with plain soil or well drained potting mix. I have also stored them in autumn leaves and sawdust. Soil seems the best.
Elevate the pots etc if you can on a wooden of plastic pallet as well to aid in airflow and to stop any errant water becoming a problem.
Because I am digging so.many tubers early this year I’m offering tuber clumps for sale now as I can’t store them all.
Keep an eye out for some little and some not so little beauties.
These include the Burgundy Berry Dahlias which I am checking over as I dig them up so I am listing a couple of clumps every few days.
There will probably be some Purple and White bicoloured Dahlias too, some lovely miniatures too.
Lastly thank you for your support. It is so much appreciated by myself and all the furry and feathered animals that have a forever home here.
Dahlias are normally divided just before planting in Australia or by a grower prior to selling to check for good eye formation ( this mis where the shoots and stems grow form, like on a potato Dahlias develop eyes
When you divide a large clump of Dahlias you may find some naturally come apart as they are plants that developed their own stem. Otherwise it is a bit different and a good sharp knife and Secateurs will help. The important thing to note is a Dahlia tuber will easily grow as long as their is some stem and end of tuber is intact. Large clumps may have a squishy tuber on outside, simply remove and cut back to clean tuber or stem.
By dividing a good sized clump you can share with friends, increase the flower production and they settle in faster than a larger clump.
Prior to planting dig in well rotted cow manure into soil and let it sit for a few weeks if possible. Use free draining soil and check ph of soil prior to planting especially with newly bought soil.
Just remember when planting resist watering especially when they are first planted, at least wait until good growth above ground is achieved. Place stakes in at planting to avoid tuber damage.
When cutting Dahlia flowers make sure to not leave an open stem, stems are often hollow so cut down until it is sealed and on a angle.
Today I wanted to tell you all about the wonderful Perennial ( this means flowers years after year) flowering plants I have in my garden and make amazing cut flowers. These are all easy care flowers that clump up and send up stems of gorgeously different flowers. Yarrow, Chrysanthemums, Asters, Shasta daisies, Windflowers.
At the moment all these plants are semi dormant, so not flowering but they are sitting there ready to put forth the growth towards flowering from Spring onward. Now is the time to plant them in the ground!! Then they have mild weather to settle in and will be able to cope with dry or wet conditions
Yarrow also a useful herb, I grow white, pink and yellow of these. Feathery foliage and stems of clustered little flowers. Drought hardy once established and acts as a ground cover retaining moisture too.
Then there are Asters, I grow the white, purple and yellow and have new varieties settling in this year. These Asters all send up a spray of flowers, in the yellows case its feathery like wattle flower almost.
Chrysanthemums are doing the same thing, can be divided now like the other flowers I’ve been talking about here too. I grow full pettaled yellow, pink single, some of the green pompom style and have new varieties I have added this year into a new garden bed.
Windflowers are magical long stemmed stunners which some florists go gaga over very understandably. They inhabit a larger area than the other plants but are so worth growing. This year I’m adding pink and double pink to my white windflowers.
I would highly recommend adding these to your collection for a cottage style garden, for picking and to gaze upon with utter wonder.
I have fantastic value bundles of these plants for sale on my website. Normally most of these plants sell for from $12 each through other online nurseries.
It’s been a busy few weeks digging Dahlias, helping some friends as well as my own. I’m now finishing up digging the remaining couple of Dahlia beds and sorting dahlias ready for colour mixes.
I’m preparing new areas for Dahlia planting in late September this year. I always plan to be organized and it seems I do get a bit better this year. Extra labeling of Dahlias worked well other than the strip where Magpies decided it was fun to pull them out to see if they tasted yummy.
My preparations include getting a load of newspaper and cardboard together, a delivery of plain organic soil coming later this week. I decided not to use a rich mix like I got a few years ago as it was highly alkaline and needed to age a lot and add a load of cow manure, not just a little bit either.
So a new bed in my yard will have added cow manure into the soil. If soil is very dry I will wet the bed down prior to planting a bit but not after planting and I don’t water my Dahlias unless they are in pots and then infrequently. Last year during the drought I didn’t water them at all.
So for now most of the dug up Dahlia tubers are snuggled up in autumn leaves or wood shavings or in the pots they grew in also under cover. Storage area needs to be dry and out of sun, but well aired as well.
I’ve just listed Pretty in Pink Dahlia mix for sale via my Website,its in limited amounts. There will be more listed over coming weeks such as Whimsical White, Racy Red, Powerful Purple.
If you would like to know of newly listed mixes and lots of other happenings please add your name and email to the link below.
Keep warm, well and safe
Dahlias are just coming into their prime flowering time. Especially now they have had some good rain and the weather has cooled.
I’m seeing more blooms on my plants whereas before it was 99% leaves and stems.
So now is the time to dead head to increase formation of new blooms.
If you haven’t yet, stake the taller plants as blooms will make them top heavy. Tie them to the stakes with wide fabric, not string as this can cut into the stems.
Resist watering them as we have have had good rain. Unless in a pot or a really hot location they won’t need watering unless you still haven’t had rain.
I’ll have a lot of identified varieties and colours available as winter hits and the Dahlias go into their dormancy.
Send me some pictures of your beauties!!
Dahlias are now flowering their little hearts out here. How are your Dahlias going? Here are some suggestions if you have had good rain and your soil drains well and yet they aren’t flowering as well as you hoped.
Remember Dahlias really do their best as Autumn begins ( this is peak flowering time as the sun has lost its bite), they prefer sun in the morning and protection from the afternoon sun. Don’t worry if they aren’t in that position. You can fix this with some strategically placed shadecloth. They will still flower under shadecloth.
Once they do begin flowering well I would recommend deadheading regularly. Our friends the bees really like well opened Dahlias so I leave as long as I can.
If you have questions please feel to email me me via the contact page.
I also wanted to let you in on a very special deal for my readers.
Order a bunch of Dahlias and Zinnias to collect on 13th February.from Taree. (see details below in comments) lovingly organically grown gorgeously romantic colours.
Support a small local flower farming business.
$39.95 a bunch (minimum of 15 stems) with a bag of 5 Spring flowering bulbs included while stocks last.
Enter the code dahliavalentine during checkout for a 10% discount.