Monday, June 8, 2009

Who says you have to dig up tubers?

Who says you have to dig up dahlia tubers for the winter?
You know, I think that a lot of these specialty gardening rules keep people from trying to grow new plants. If I have to dig up the bulb or the tuber every single fall, and then put it back in the ground for the next spring, well, it's just not going to happen. Also, who says you can't grow dahlias from seed? I grew dwarf dahlias from seed last spring. They bloomed through the summer and fall. I didn't dig up the tubers. We had a very cold winter for around here, so I didn't know if they would come back. They are all back and thriving. So don't let some of these gardening rules keep you from trying something. Try it your way. If it works, you'll be happy. If it doesn't, oh well. Try something else.
OK so the true dahlia experts might be irritated with my attitude, but I simply don't have time to devote all my energy to my garden. I do, however, like to try growing a variety of things. I don't garden for any sort of competition; just my own happiness when I look at the pretty flowers in the yard.
I'm saying all this because the fear of imperfection can keep me from trying new things, but I'm realizing that I can just garden my way. There is no test at the end of the summer, and I am the boss so the only one I could disappoint would be myself, but I'm not going to let that happen.
Here is a rose growing in the back. It's along the sunny south wall, so it blooms pretty early and keeps blooming straight through to November. I'm torn between putting some insecticide on it or letting things be. I'm hoping to get a population of ladybugs, so I don't want to spray it. But at the same time, it's leaves are being eaten up by some sort of small green worm-like creature, and there are aphids. I'll try to spray it off with water for now. These are some tough rose bushes I have. No matter how little attention or water I give them, they keep putting out lots of roses every year.

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