Flirty Fleurs’ – Dahlia Tubers for Sale!

Dahlias grown by Alicia Schwede of the Flirty Fleurs Blog. Dahlias include Rebecca Lynn, Alloway Candy, and Bride To Be

If you happen to follow my flower adventures on Instagram and/or Facebook surely this past summer you witnessed quite a few photos taken in my Dahlia Patch, the name I coined my ever growing Dahlia garden.
I started growing dahlias my first summer (2014) at our new house in Washington. They grew nicely and I learned how to divide and store them that winter. 2015 came along and due to the dividing I had MORE dahlias to plant. Well, history repeated itself and I divided and stored dahlias again last winter. What started as 50 tubers in 2014 turned into 400 tubers for 2016. AND then there is this current round, where those 400 tubers have been divided into … thousands. BTW I tell Vivian at Everyday Flowers that she is too good of a teacher as she is the one who taught me how to divide! She gets a big kick out of my ever expanding dahlia tuber collection.
So that brings us to the point of THIS BLOG POST.
I have A LOT of Dahlias for the upcoming season and for the first time ever I am looking to sell off some tubers. (Last year I did pack some up and send off to friends in California, Colorado, and Nebraska so I could share the love).
Sooooo….. I have 4 Varieties up for Sale:

Flirty Fleurs Dahlias - Rebecca Lynn Dahlias - Hot Pink Dahlia TubersRebecca Lynn Dahlia Tubers – For Sale
Flirty Fleurs Dahlias - Bride To Be Dahlias - White Dahlia TubersBride To Be Dahlias – For Sale
Flirty Fleurs Dahlias - Alloway Candy Dahlias - Pink Dahlia TubersAlloway Candy Dahlias – For Sale
Mero Star Dahlia Tubers For Sale, Dinner Plate Burgundy Dahlia Tubers for SaleMero Star Dahlias – For Sale

Get your orders in now to reserve the tubers. I will be shipping them out in the spring once the weather allows for shipping across the country.
Please email me at info@flirtyfleurs.com if you have any questions at all or need help placing an order – I am more than happy to help!!

A Year in Review | 2016

This is one long blog post, but I promise it is filled with lots of pretty flower photographs! ๐Ÿ™‚

Santa Barbara, California

1/9 Enjoying a beach moment in Santa Barbara – Florabundance Design Days is about to begin, always a great way to start a new year!

Alicia Schwede at Florabundance Design Days designing an arrangement with David Austin Roses

1/11 – At Florabundance Design Days designing an arrangement with David Austin Roses

Bella Fiori - centerpiece of David Austin Roses and Hellebores with berries

1/11 – another arrangement that I designed while at Florabundance Design Days

Angie of Posh Florals, Dallas Texas

1/29 – Visiting Angie of Posh Florals in Dallas, Texas

Avant Garden in Dallas Texas

1/29 – Visting Avant Garden in Dallas, Texas

Alicia Schwede and Alex Jusino

1/30 – Attending Create + Cultivate with my friend Alex of Exquisite Events (of Chicago)

Flirty Fleurs Floral Design Classes in Seattle, Washington - how to design a wrist corsage

2/21 – Go, Go Flower Power! Actually a snapshot from one of my floral design classes – Corsages & Boutonnieres

Hellebores grown by Flirty Fleurs

2/25 – have I mentioned my obsession with Hellebores?! Yes, I adore them! Here’s a selection of beauties from my own garden.

Flirty Fleurs car loaded with flowers for a floral design class in Seattle

3/6 – All loaded up and ready to drive to Seattle – this is how my car looks on the morning of a design class!

Amanda of Alluring Blooms designing an arrangement with hellebores

3/6 – my friend Amanda of Alluring Blooms flew in from Wisconsin to attend my Hellebore Centerpiece class. (photo by Riz Reyes)

Centerpiece designed by Amanda of Alluring Blooms

3/6 – one of the gorgeous arrangements that Amanda designed while visiting me

Flirty Fleurs - selection of Hellebores from my garden

3/28 – The hellebores keep blooming! Another snapshot from my garden collection of this magnificent flower.

Florabundance Flower Trip to Keukenhof in Holland

4/29 – The full crew who attended Florabundance Design Days – Holland Edition! Yes, the trip was SO amazing! We were blessed to experience so many wonderful flower sites with a super cool group of people!

Fantastic display of Daffodils at Keukenhof in Holland

4/24 – Fantastic display of Daffodils at Keukenhof in Holland

The Black Tulip Museum in Holland with Joost and Els

4/24 – Joost and Els at the Black Tulip Museum

Flower carts filled with Tulips at Aalsmeer Flower Auction

4/25 – I find Aalsmeer flower auction in Holland to be absolutely mesmerizing, carts of flowers scooting off in all directions

Ariella Chezar designing an arrangement in Holland

4/25 – Spent the day in a greenhouse designing with Ariella, yes it was as special as it sounds!

Shawn of Flower Bar with a gorgeous flower arrangement

4/26 – My friend Shawn of Flower Bar (Idaho) with an arrangement that she designed during our design session with Ariella

Schreiner's Iris Gardens in Salem, Oregon

5/2 – Chad and I visited Schreiner’s Iris Gardens in Salem, Oregon as we drove south to California. We had great timing as all the Irises were in full bloom!

Garden Valley Roses in Petaluma, California in full bloom.

5/5 – Garden Valley Roses in Petaluma, California in full bloom.

Rhododendron Show at Mendocino Botanical Gardens.

5/8 – Rhododendron Show at Mendocino Botanical Gardens.

Tacoma Garden Club Presentation of a parallel design.

5/18 – I had the pleasure of presenting at the Tacoma Garden Club. I tried my hand at a parallel design.

touring rose farms

5/23 – Ariella Chezar is in town to give a demonstration at Seattle Wholesale Growers Market. Prior to the workshop a small group of us went on tour of the flower farms in preparation for the workshop. Getting a photo of everyone was pretty much impossible as everyone moves in opposite directions! On tour were Steve Moore, Dawn of All My Thyme Roses, Molly of SWGM, Diane of Jello Mold, Ariella Chezar and myself. It sure was a fun day!

Ariella Chezar with an arm load of roses from All My Thyme

5/23 – Ariella Chezar with an arm load of roses from All My Thyme

Diane of Jello Mold and Dawn of All My Thyme

5/23 – Diane was trying to make Dawn smell a rose and Dawn refused! The funny part is that it is Dawn’s Rose Farm! I was laughing so hard that I could barely take the photo!

Steve Moore getting a photo of one of the roses

5/23 – Steve getting a photo of one of the roses

The beautiful spread of flowers at Seattle Wholesale Growers Market for the workshop with Ariella Chezar

5/23 – The beautiful spread of flowers at Seattle Wholesale Growers Market for the workshop with Ariella Chezar

Ariella's finished compote design at Seattle Wholesale Growers Market

5/23 – Ariella’s finished compote design

Bella Fiori - urn arrangement with peach and white flowers, including columbines.

5/25 – After Ariella’s workshop I played around with the leftover flowers and came up with this design. Love the dancing columbines.

Bella Fiori - flower arrangement of purple and white flowers.

6/12 – Organized a photoshoot with Becca Jones Photography at Bella Luna Farms in Snohomish, Washington.

Bella Fiori & Becca Jones Photography

6/12 – the long table was set with an arrangement that rand down the center.

Bella Fiori & B Jones PHotography - Snohomish Weddings - Bella Luna Farms

6/12 – The welcome table to the event.

Bella Fiori & B Jones Photography. Bridal bouquet of garden roses, anemones, and sweet peas. Bella Luna Farms, Snohomish, Washington Weddings.

6/12 – THIS bouquet was a dream come true. The Koko Lokos are from my cutting garden.

Johann posing with all the dahlias at Seattle Wholesale Growers Market

7/14 – Johann posing with all the dahlias at Seattle Wholesale Growers Market

Butchart Gardens in Canada

7/16 – Chad & I visited Butchart Gardens in Victoria, Canada. *I highly recommend visiting here*

Butchart Gardens is absolutely breathtaking.

7/16 – Butchart Gardens is absolutely breathtaking.

Farm tour day at Jello Mold farm organized by Seattle Wholesale Growers Market, I lead a floral design demonstration.

7/18 – Farm tour day at Jello Mold farm organized by Seattle Wholesale Growers Market, I lead a floral design demonstration.

Dennis of Jello Mold Farms

7/18 – Dennis making us all laugh!

Alicia Schwede and Debra Prizing in the Cafe Au Lait Dahlia hoop house at Jello Mold Farm

7/18 – hanging out with Debra Prizing in the Cafe Au Lait Dahlia hoophouse

Bella Fiori design with dahlias

7/18 – my petite design from the demonstration

Laura Dowling with Danielle at Seattle Wholesale Growers Market

7/22 – Laura Dowling with Danielle at Seattle Wholesale Growers Market

7/25 - Laura Dowling and Georgianna Lane were working on a photoshoot. I can't show what the design was, so I'll show ya an undercover peek at them at work ;)

7/25 – Laura Dowling and Georgianna Lane were working on a photoshoot. I can’t show what the design was, so I’ll show ya an undercover peek at them at work ๐Ÿ˜‰

Dawn of All My Thyme, Debra Prinzing, Alicia Schwede, Laura Dowling, and Georgianna Lane

7/25 – fantastic lunch with Dawn of All My Thyme, Debra Prinzing, myself, Laura Dowling, and Georgianna Lane

Flirty Fleurs Alicia Schwede's Dahlia Cutting Garden

7/26 – my dahlia patch is in full bloom — it’s so beautiful and I spend most evenings here keeping the plants tidy.

Amy of Gather came by to check out the dahlia patch

7/27 – Amy of Gather came by to check out the dahlia patch

Flirty Fleurs Dahlias - a variety of dahlia sizes

7/28 – all the varieties of dahlias that I’m growing, such a range in size!!

Third Annual Dahlia Wall at Seattle Wholesale Growers Market

8/3 – Third annual Dahlia Wall at Seattle Wholesale Growers Market. Johann got his picture taken with it!

Bella Fiori - bridal bouquet of pink garden roses, cafe au lait dahlias,

8/6 – Bridal bouquet for on of the sweet brides I worked with this season.

Alicia Schwede and Robyn Rissman holding buckets of Peonies for the Field to Vase Dinner

8/12 – Headed to Colorado! Working with Robyn of Bare Root Flora on the Field to Vase dinner in Boulder!

Field to Vase Dinner in Boulder, Colorado

8/13 – Field to Vase Dinner in Boulder, Colorado

Field to Vase dinner in Boulder, Colorado.

8/13 – The table that just keeps going and going! Robyn and I opted for an ombre look down the table.

Alexandra Farms Garden Roses

8/16 – Treasure in the trunk!
Headed to my Colorado workshop with all these beautiful roses from Alexandra Farms.

Flirty Fleurs Floral design workshop in Denver, Colorado

8/16 – the ladies who attended my workshop in Colorado

Flirty Fleurs - Peaches 'n Cream Dahlia

8/25 – total geek moment, one of my dahlias (peaches ‘n cream) was featured on Real Simple’s instagram feed!

Flower necklaces

9/1 – Amy of Gather and I experimented with making flower necklaces. It’s really rather fun to create them!

real life of a floral designer

9/4 – my friend, Melanie, needed some extra hands for a large wedding setup. What got me was how unglamorous our glamours floral designer life can be some days! Step carefully in the alley…

Flirty Fleurs Arch and Chuppah Floral Design Class in Washington State

9/10 – Arch and Chuppah Class at my home! Here’s three of the four designs we created.

Flirty Fleurs Dahlia Patch

9/10 – Katie flew up from Southern California for the Arch & Chuppah class. She enjoyed visiting the dahlia patch.

Flirty Fleurs Workshop - Arch and Chuppah Designs Workshop

9/10 – Our autumn inspired floral chuppah from the flirty fleurs workshop.

Fantastic display of Dahlia Barns' dahlia varieties.

9/11 – Fantastic display of Dahlia Barns’ dahlia varieties.

Dahlia Barn of North Bend, Washington

9/11 – My uncle and I went for a drive to North Bend, WA to visit the Dahlia Barn

Rabbit eating dahlia blooms

9/13 – deadheading in the dahlia patch, the wild rabbits beg for some of the blooms

Flirty Fleurs - Dahlias for sale! Rebecca Lynn, Alloway Candy, Bride To Be Dahlias

9/13 – The dahlias are blooming like crazy! I took my first load of dahlias to Seattle Wholesale Growers Market. After years of buying all flowers from markets, this was the first time I sold flowers TO the market!

Floral Design Class at Ravenna Gardens in Seattle by Flirty Fleurs

9/14 – Taught a Floral Design Class at Ravenna Gardens in Seattle

Flirty Fleurs has its own flower collection with Longfield Gardens!!

9/19 – How cool is this?! Flirty Fleurs has its own flower collection with Longfield Gardens!! Shown here are some of my favorite tulips to design with!

Visting Massachusetts - admiring all the mum plants for sale

10/13 – Visting Massachusetts – admiring all the mum plants for sale

Terrain in Westport, CT

10/17 – Visited Terrain in Westport, CT – this place is amazing! I highly recommend visiting here if you are ever in the area!!

In The Company of Women Book tour

10/18 – Attended a talk on “in the company of women” with a great group of girlfriends

Flirty Fleurs Dahlia Tubers

10/20 – time to start digging up the dahlias and divide the tubers before storing for winter. Simply amazing how one tiny tuber turns into this cluster in the 6 months it is in the ground!

Gordons Farms in Skagit Valley

10/24 – Gordons Farm in Skagit Valley — getting in the fall spirit!

Bella Fiori - flower arrangement with dahlias, berries, persimmons

10/29 – one of my arrangements, almost all flowers from my garden. This arrangement was one of my most popular ones ever on instagram.

Persimmons on the branch

11/5 – Handful of Persimmons

Harvesting Persimmons

11/8 – Chad and my dad harvesting more persimmons – they are so tasty and they look gorgeous in arrangements

11/9 - Harvest at my parents place in California - lemons, persimmons, and privet berries

11/9 – Harvest at my parents place in California – lemons, persimmons, and privet berries

Bella Fiori - Autumn inspired orange arrangement with roses and persimmons

11/11 – made this arrangement for my mom. autumn colors are her favorite.

Bella Fiori - compote design with pears, roses, grey dusty miller

12/8 – back home and trying to wrap my mind around it being December already!

Christmas flower arrangements

12/18 – design time with Keita and Shannon, getting into the Christmas spirit.

Winter in Washington

12/24 – Looks like it’ll be a white Christmas in Washington.

Hello 2017!

Hello 2017!
Here we are again .. the beginning of another new year.
I’ve never been one to set New Year’s resolutions, how about you? Instead I like to focus on goals on a monthly basis, maybe it’s easier to tackle? Maybe it’s easier to predict what will happen in one month, but much more difficult to predict what will happen in a full year?!
Well, I do have one goal set for January and it looks like it’ll happen just fine – I have a Rose Study scheduled for next Monday, January 9th! Rose Studies are the favorite posts for Flirty Fleurs readers and I’m happy to be starting out the new year with a really great one!
**Pink Garden Roses with Alexandra Farms!!**

David Austin Miranda, a pink garden rose for the cut floral industry. Grown by Alexandra Farms.

David Austin “Miranda” on Day 3
Grown by Alexandra Farms

I’m headed to Santa Barbara, California this coming weekend – excited to be attending the 5th Annual Florabundance Design Days! Hard to believe this is already the 5th annual conference! I’ll be posting away on Instagram and Facebook while there and will plan on putting up a blog post upon my return.

Tomorrow I have a fun post scheduled for all of you, I put together a Reflect on 2016 & Set Goals for 2017 feature. Oh and on Thursday a fun post with pictures of my flower filled days from 2016.
Michelle will continue to be with us on Wednesday and she is having fun with the Wedding Wednesday posts – I know I enjoy seeing what she finds each week!

So my dear flower friends, I do wish all of you a very good 2017. May it be filled with lots of pretty flowers and super cool clients.

xo,
Alicia

Fleur Friday

Hello Flower Friends,

Have you all noticed that for the past two months the Wedding Wednesdays have been curated and posted by a Michelle? Well, I hope you have noticed as I for one have been enjoying the change and new scenery on flirty fleurs blog.
I decided a few months ago that I wanted to bring in more perspective to the blog .. and to be honest I’ve been getting bored with daily postings. (did I just say that outloud?!) Especially during the summer months when all I wanted to do was be outside! Really .. the weather here in Washington state is just too damn fantastic in the summer! So a few months ago I decided that it was time to make some changes around here, changes are always hard though, aren’t they?? I gave a lot of thought to who would want to be part of the blog, who shares my love of wedding floral design and who do I trust to turn over the keys to the backside of the blog. Well, I didn’t look far, I reached out to a previous employee of Bella Fiori. Yes, Michelle was my right hand, main assistant, and mind reader at Bella Fiori for 5 wedding seasons. I’m really happy to be working with Michelle again – even if we are separated by many states!
Here’s a picture of Michelle and I with Sarah and Lauren at the Bella Fiori 5 year anniversary party (2008!):

bella fiori denver 2008 - alicia schwede

Sarah – Lauren – Michelle – Alicia
Team Bella Fiori
5 year anniversary party – 2008

Fleur Friday – Field To Vase

One week from today I’ll be standing next to my friend Robyn of Bare Root Flora and getting to work on all the flowers for the Field To Vase dinner. The dinner is taking place the next evening at The Fresh Herb Company in Boulder, Colorado. We are both so excited to be contributing our flower designing skills and filling the dinner tables with lush centerpieces!

Field To Vase Dinner Boulder

I was recently interviewed on the American Grown Flowers Blog, it was interesting to have the tables turned as I’m used to be in the interviewer and not the interviewee!
http://www.americangrownflowers.org/sweet-savory-aromas-fill-the-boulder-skies/

Robyn was also interviewed and you can read her interview here-
http://www.americangrownflowers.org/a-marriage-of-food-flowers-in-colorado/

Fleur Friday

Hello Flower Friends!
Wow, it’s JULY 1st already?! We are half way thru 2016 — how can that be??
well, I hope you are all doing well and looking forward to a holiday weekend!
As for me, my family was just visiting for the past week, which was super fun. My niece and I have a tradition of making flower crowns and other designs and doing a little photoshoot. Here are a few of our pieces from this past week –

I’ve been wanting to try a big, poofy flower halo for awhile and thought this one was fun. The dahlias, hydrangea, porcelain berry vine, and astilbe are all from my cutting gardens.
Bella Fiori - flower halo of dahlias, hydrangea and astilbe

Johann got in on the photo action here-
Bella Fiori wearing a flower wreath of dahlias, astilbe and hydrangea

Maddie’s favorite flower in my cutting garden is the Koko Loko Rose-

Bella Fiori koko loko

Our flower child look-

bella fiori flower child

Bouquet of koko loko roses, peony poppies, and clematis-

Bella Fiori Bouquet of clematis, koko loko roses, and peony poppies

Maddie’s flower crown of porcelain berry vines and two types of clematis flowers-

Bella Fiori - flower halo of clematis

Another view of the bouquet-

Bella Fiori - Bouquet of koko loko roses, peony poppies and clematis

 

Hope you enjoyed seeing the designs that we made. In addition to flowers we did a whole lot of baking, our other family tradition. I think the winner of the week was the Peach Pie .. perfect summer peach pie – yum!

Wishing you all a fabulous 4th of July weekend!

Alicia

Fleur Friday & Hello!

Hello dear flower friends,

I feel like I need to write a note to say Hi to all of you and give a bit of an apology. I know it’s been kinda quiet over here on the blog lately, to be honest I’m having a hard time sitting still at my computer lately. Blame it on the beautiful weather and scenery here in Washington state, I just find I want to be outside. The garden beckons… there is always one more thing to do outside, one more flower bed to work on. Add on all the nurseries, farms, and hanging out at Seattle Wholesale Growers Market and it seems I’m usually out & about visiting someone or some place. Plus, it’s light here from 5am to 9:30pm, so much light to be outside doing something fun. Yet, I feel bad because I haven’t been sharing as much here on the blog. I do have so much to share, the trip in April to Holland with Florabundance – hope you all followed along on Instagram as we saw so many beautiful flower sites. Photos from the various design classes I’ve taught the past few months – gosh, we’ve been creating pretty stuff!
Oh gosh, I’m sitting here and the list is building in my head of all the stories I need to share…
I think I need a blizzard to hit, where I get snowed in for 2-3 days and have nothing else to do but work online (this did used to happen when I lived in Colorado!!)

I promise to try a bit harder over here and bring you all flower inspiration.
Hey, if any of you have something to submit, please do so! I love to share real weddings! Also, How-Tos & other fun tips. I enjoy hearing from other floral designers who can share inspiration!! Just email me at info@flirtyfleurs.com

Oh, and today? Yea, another good one lined up – Georgianna Lane is picking me up so we can go visit Dawn at All My Thyme Rose Garden in Skagit Valley. Then an afternoon meeting with Miles at Fiori Floral Design. Plus, work on the flowers for a photoshoot this Sunday taking place at a gorgeous venue in Snohomish — the venue used to be a Rhododendron Farm and it offers 10 acres of landscaped gardens! pretty pretty ๐Ÿ™‚

Here’s one of my recent designs —

Designed by Alicia Schwede of Bella Fiori & Flirty Fleurs.

I hope you are all doing well and having a good wedding season.
xo,
Alicia

Flower Focus :: Hellebores

A few weeks ago I posted this photograph on Instagram & Facebook of freshly cut hellebores out of my garden-

Hellebores grown by Alicia Schwede of Flirty Fleurs Flower Blog

Quite a few people replied and asked how I could cut them so young and have them last? How long until they wilt?
(pretty sure under their breath they were saying – those are going to wilt!)

So here’s the deal. I look for one thing in each stem that I cut – the stem has to have at least one flower on it that has lost its stamens and is starting to go to seed. Check out the three images here, in each one you’ll see the bottom of the three blooms is without the stamens (yellow pollen). My friend Riz of RHR Horticulture shared with me awhile back that the key of getting hellebores to last is to wait to cut them until at least one flower per stem has started to go to seed. Riz is a well known horticulturist, especially here in Washington State.

harvesting hellebores

harvesting and cutting hellebores

when to pick hellebores
Ok, so after I sort through my plants I do a fresh, sharp cut on the stems I want and I immediately dipped the cut stems into QuickDip. In general I don’t use many flower aids/foods, etc. But I find with hellebores it sure doesn’t hurt to dip a fresh cut stem into QuickDip. That’s It!
I have had GREAT LUCK with these two simple steps. I cut the above hellebores two weeks ago for a design class that I was teaching — and guess what, I still have many of them in a vase on my desk!

Here’s one of my arrangements re-using the hellebores I had used in my class demonstration –

Bella Fiori Washington; arrangement of hellebores, ranunculus, viburnum

Here’s another example of how well the hellebores aged.
This is an arrangement designed by Amanda of Alluring Blooms
Designed by Amanda of Alluring Blooms, Wisconsin while at a Flirty Fleurs Floral Design Workshop in Seattle, Washington

Ten days later I took her arrangement apart, check out what was left of the flowers –
dead flowers, hellebores are still alive
Crazy, right?? The hellebores still looked great! A few tulips were trying to hang in there. The anemones, hyacinths, pieris japonica, fritillaries and ranunculus were DONE!

So there you have it, that’s what I how I care for cut hellebores out of my garden!

Bridal Bouquets of Floral Designers

Last week I sent out a request via Instagram and Facebook asking for floral designers to send in photos of the bouquets they carried for their own weddings. So fun to see what everyone carried!!

Flora Organica Designs - JJT Photo - Peach and White Bridal Bouquet

Faye of Flora Organica Designs
JJT Photo

Fleurie Flowers of Reedley, California - cascading bouquet of white flowers

Laurie of Fleurie Flowers

Fleurie Flowers of Reedley, California - cascading bouquet of white flowers

Laurie of Fleurie Flowers

Mandy of MJM Designs - Bridal bouquet

Mandy of MJM Designs

Stacey of Roots Flowers and Events - Bridal bouquet of purple and green flowers

Stacey of Roots Flowers and Events

Stacey of Roots Flowers and Events - Bridal bouquet of purple and green flowers

Stacey of Roots Flowers and Events

Bella Fiori Bridal Bouquet - lilacs, roses, clematis, and dahlias.

Last, but not least. The bouquet I carried! Lilacs, purple roses, dahlias and clematis. I combined my favorite flowers with my grandma’s favorite flowers. She loved roses, but growing the purple roses always proved difficult – small little plants back in the day. She had gorgeous lilac bushes. If I could have fit a pansy in here, I would have! Burgundy dahlias have been one of my favorites for years. Then there is clematis, if you know me you know I adore clematis!!

Fleur Friday + Longfield Gardens

Good morning Flower Friends!

Sorry for the late post today, it’s been crazy busy around here lately. Granted it’s the holiday season and I have a feeling every single person is crazy busy, right?!

One of the projects I’ve been working on since returning from the European adventure three weeks ago is turning over my cutting garden. This, of course, is largely dictated by the weather — there seems to be a window here in Washington from about 12-4 where there is enough sun in my yard to get out there and work.

The week I returned from the trip Chad and I pulled out all the dahlias. We dug up about 140 plants, not bad for a second year cutting garden, eh? You guys, I admit, I’m a slow-poke at processing these dahlia tubers!!! Vivian from Everyday Flower Farm suggested I split the tubers in the fall this year and not wait until spring like I did last year. So I’m cleaning and splitting and packing them. I must over think each cut because it has taken me a long time to get thru these tubers. Oh, and if all these tubers make it through the winter … well, I’ll be planting a lot of tubers in the spring – probably 400?! ha ha.

Dahlias Tubers in a wheelbarrow from Flirty Fleurs Gardens

Chad and I got the flower beds cleaned up and pulled out anything that wouldn’t overwinter. Then we started planting the BULBS. BULBS GALORE! I’m counting the days until spring!!
Back in September at the Field To Vase Dinner at Jello Mold Farm I met Danielle from Longfield Gardens. She told me about the tulips and other bulbs that Longfield Gardens offers and I was instantly intrigued! The next day I found myself spending a considerable amount of time on the website, picking out bulbs for different displays in my cutting garden.

This is what I have planned so far (as long as those damn rabbits stay away)-

For one flower bed I have this wine, plum and white display planned. I already have dark purple bearded irises established in the bed and two Koko Loko Rose bushes (not that the roses will be blooming at the same time as all these spring flowers). These anemones and fritillarias are going to be so killer (damn rabbits better not touch the fritillarias)
Longfield Gardens Anemones and Fritillarias

The next flower bed is filled with these red and white tulips!! 150 Parrot & fringed tulips – I can’t wait for these to pop up in the spring!
Y’all, I’m going to be making some really pretty arrangements! (and probably teach a design class with all these pretties)
Longfield Gardens Red and White Tulips

Now since Chad works so hard in the yard (he does really enjoy it) he gets to have his own display of orange tulips and fritillarias – orange is his favorite color. I haven’t had much luck with Lutea Fritillarias in the past, crossing fingers they grow this year!
Longfield Gardens Orange Tulips and Fritallarias

Going to pretty amazing in the spring, don’t ya think??

Oh – three in progress photos from the planting. Matisse absolutely loves the days we work in the garden. She watches each bulb get placed.

Chad is holding 75 Anemones and Fritillarias — hard to believe these 75 tiny little corms will turn into plants, right?!
Matisse helping plant flowers

Matisse, Black and White Cocker Spaniel

She watches every single one in the ground. OCD Cocker!
planting tulips with Matisse

I feel pretty good knowing the garden has been put to bed for winter. Everything in its place and now I wait until springtime for a flower explosion. And visit Longfield Gardens’ website again to see what else I might want to order for the next planting go-around! *CLEMATIS selection looks amazing*