Dahlias and Mums 8/25/23

Dahlias and Mums 8/25/23

Posted by Mandy + Steve O'Shea on

  Howdy y’all!

  Hopefully you are enjoying cooler days than we.  It’s rough out there at the moment.  High 90’s and low hundreds, especially when the humidity and heat index is factored in.  I keep trying the shade, but it doesn’t work.  Still damned hot.

  In the mornings, the team is busy cutting Peaches & Cream and a few other early varieties of dahlias and bringing them into the cooler.  Then they head back out into the fields to cover the baby flowers with organza bags to protect them from insect damage. Every single one of our dahlias spend their whole growing period covered in organza bags.  It’s a very time consuming way to produce dahlias, but prevents us from having to spray toxic chemicals and minimizes pest problems.  Needless to say, our fields are not what folks dream of when they think of a flower farm.  Everyone wants to come out and take wedding/prom photos in our fields, but it’s a field of rebar, structural netting and white bags cinched around the flower heads.  Not cute.  The resulting flowers are stunning though.  It’s worth not being cute.

  For all you mum growers out there, now is the time to start putting structural netting on them to support them as they grow tall and and get ready to be filled with blooms.  String up those sides to prevent errant stems from flaying out into your aisles.  Inspect for aphids and knock them back with insecticidal soap.  We recommend an electric backpack sprayer from My4Sons.  It's sooooooooo much better than the handpump ones, and so much quieter, cleaner, more reliable and just all around more life affirming than a gas powered one.

  If you’ve been wanting to get into planting heirloom mums in your garden next year, we are about to go live with a sale of our absolute favorite heirloom varieties.  This sale is for rooted cuttings that will ship Spring 2024. We’ve tried out many varieties on the market and thinned it down to the ones with the strongest stems, easiest to grow varieties, and that are incredibly beautiful.  If you are on the waiting list, look out for your email, because you’ll be getting a notification in your inbox tomorrow morning that allows you to access our selection a week before the general public.  If you’d like to get on that list, this is your last chance!!

  Aside from that, we’ve just been dealing with a broken everything.  Central A.C., truck transmission, septic system, Isuzu electrical and fuel system, tractor in the shop for 4 months (!), stove failure, ants short circuiting the greenhouse electrical, leaky kitchen sink, generator, mower, etc…. Every time I turn my head, it’s something else.  But…. We have a dishwasher.  So life is good.  As long as a robot is washing my dishes, I am good.  

  Also, I’m prepping our old school bus turned guest-house for a facelift and I just ripped off the old roof rack to make space to build a roof this morning.  Nostalgia ensued. The roof rack was not only our sunset chill spot to marvel at the spectacle of 10 Burning Mans, but it was built with the old stage that I had constructed for our wedding.  My brothers and I and a few friends had a pseudo band and had the whole wedding dancing for hours in the mud (unexpected rainstorm) while I serenaded my lovely bride.  Good times.

  We’ll keep plugging away with dahlias and mums and broken stuff and looking forward to next weeks temperature drop.  I hope you’re well wherever you are.  Thanks for following along with us!