Greed. Isn’t it wonderful?
Is there a word for people like me? Do I need to go into rehab? Do I need an intervention?
For my birthday last year I was bought a book called ‘Dahlias’ by Andy Vernon. It is like the crack cocaine of the gardening books. I can’t get enough. I need more. Andy Vernon is my dealer.
So here is my effort to manage my problem. I haven’t any more room in my actual garden, so how about I design my fantasy garden?
In my fantasy dahlia garden (yes. A whole garden devoted to dahlias. Eyes roll back in head) I can see:
Terraces of Dahlias
This is inspired by some terraced raised beds I saw on the ‘Tiny Urban Farmer’ blog. I am going to have a winding path through my terraces. Because this is a fantasy garden, I will have had magic diggers effortlessly carve out these terraces on a steep slope, allowing me to view my beautiful dahlias from above and below, and to get face-to-face with ease.
I might even arrange my terraces in rainbow colours!
I’m going to start with ‘Mambo’, a powder puff of a dahlia, mauve pink. Then ‘Poodle Skirt’, if not just for the name, then for the huge magenta-mauve anemone puffballs. If we’re going for the mad ones, then we must have ‘Hollyhill Spiderwoman’ with its tangle of cherry and white tendrils. ‘Hootenanny’ is a wild cherry collarette. For the morning after there will be ‘Bed Head’, with its crown of curling orange. Then ‘EZ Duzzit’, a peachy collarette, and ‘Lucky Ducky’, a yellow fuzz.
Sweet Shop of Dahlias
Now that you have made it down the terrace, welcome to my sweet shop of dahlias. These will be in great jar-like pots. I’d like ‘Twynings Smartie’ and watermelon ‘Pipsqueak’ and ‘Lemon Puff’ and ‘Sweet Content’ (peachy pie) and ‘Hugs and Kisses’ (parma violet), please. You can take them away in paper bags to guzzle later.
A Gallaxy of Dahlias
We might as well go completely bonkers and have a suspended gallaxy of dahlias. This can be my psychedelic night garden, lit with spirals of fairy lights. I’d like ‘Mars’, a red collarette, ‘Comet’, a cranberry anemone, ‘Moonfire’ with its corona of vermillion, and ‘Satellite’, a hot pink cactus. We’ll end with dark matter, the anemone ‘Soulman’. We’ll have space-hoppers and hammocks, so you can just hang out.
I think I may have overdosed.
If you want to see a real garden filled with dahlias, my very favourite is the Salutation in Sandwich, Kent. It is magnificent.
Do you have a lust-list of dahlias? Or does another type of plant float your boat? What would your fantasy garden look like?