To see the full original newsletter with all the photos click here to get the pdf: January 2019 Newsletter
NEXT MEETING: FEBRUARY 12! NO MEETING IN JANUARY!!! In February we will have some fun projects along with the membership raffle for free Tuber Sale plants. Try to make the meeting because we will be raffling off exhibition containers to those in attendance.
HOLIDAY GALA: What a wonderful evening together! Pat arrived early with colorful table cloths. Jenna set up a cool bar—or as the refined say—a beverage station. Deborah added a couple nutcrackers but no dahlias—the first time she’s failed to bedeck the tables with our favorite bloom EVER. We all loved Cathy’s sparkles and Chad’s lights that lit. Erik donated a robust ham and Gino pleased many with shrimp and sushi. Maggie played both ends of the meal by providing both turkey and Rocha Balls! We like the way Maggie thinks! Deborah took over Joann’s traditional dish, deviled eggs. Tenaya rounded out the hors d’oevres with goat cheese log studded with walnuts. MMMM. Devi led the salad brigade with with a jolly red jello mold in the shape of a dahlia—so clever! (See below for recipe). What healthy choices beguiled us: Diane and Lola’s green salads, Jenna’s cilantro and bean salad, Pat’s veggie salad, John’s tabouleh salad, and the Geraci family’s huge veggie platter. Set upon with major dispatch were Tony’s scalloped potatoes. Some people went through our buffet line again and again as new donors arrived with more goodies. For festival carbs, Lola whipped up Thai noodles, and Greg donated both quinoa and rolls. And what glorious desserts: Ens’ Flan, Leo’s M&M cookies, Paula’s key lemon pie, and Chad’s baklava!!! Surely it must have been Frank who brought some wine to match up with Tenaya’s guava juice? Just as we were all chowing down convivially, Shelley strode through the door with a chocolate cake all a fire to celebrate Nick’s 16th birthday! Many of us remember how Erik leapt up from our party saying, “My wife is in labor RIGHT NOW.” How 16 years has flown!
PRESENT PREDATION: Suddenly there rose such a clatter and who should be banging on the windows to be let in? Santa Claus! Santa Claus praised the young Miles and Reid for mounting dahlia entries at the 2018 Show and adjured that “good boys” should be entering even more in 2019. They solemnly promised. Santa enjoyed a few of the bedizened ladies on his lap before he flew off to swanker soirees. Young Miles and Reid proffered raffle numbers whilst Deborah explained Present Predation rules. Chad kept track of stolen items. We had some odd surprises. A role of tape? Who would guess that it would be snatched away? Macaroons? First thing frozen! A lovely teapot for relaxing after digging dahlias, frozen! A complete tool bucket with gloves, twisties, trowels, and pots: frozen! John liberated a huge bag of compost. Tinnee helped herself to a vulnerable sprayer rig. Frank took a hankering to the clippers. Deborah anxiously bided her time to take possession of a dozen hand crafted dahlia magnets. (Jenna said she’d be agreeable to have a crafts class to show us all how to make these lovely refrigerator gems.) There flew a Dahlia Flag, living narcissi and a beautiful framed dahlia photo. But sox? A hanky? Much better the Calcium Nitrate, and the garden stool. Great creativity, dahlianeers!
GENEROSITY OF FRIENDS: As Devi collected membership renewals, the rest of us cleaned up. Lola, amazing Lola, took yucky serving platters to the kitchen and cleaned them. Others cleared the tables, collected leftovers and in a thrice our room reverted back to normal. Thank you to everyone for your joy, your contributions and your pitching in to help. Our dahlia community is what we make it!
PUSHING THE GERM PLASM: Herewith are photos of new dahlias. Use thedahliaaddict.com to find venders. We need pictures of our favorite flower during these Mud Months. Consider ordering a few new and cool varieties to enliven your gardens and delight your fellow growers. So much fun to fantasize over our 2019 beauties!
IN MEMORIUM: Our beautiful Marilyn Masurat is gone. We are all diminished. Mark Oldenkamp wrote this tribute:
“Ken and Marilyn have been friends in our dahlia world for a long time. They were the driving force of the John Stowell Dahlia Society in San Jose and were very involved in American Dahlia Society activities. Marilyn was a key leader for the site review, negotiation and management of the 2002 National Show and then again contributed in a similar significant way to the 2011 National Show. Some of you may remember visiting the Masurat dahlia garden as a part of the 2011 National show activities.
The PSW Dahlia conference annual meetings were regularly hosted at the Beverly Heritage Hotel in Milpitas, CA (Bay Area) which she managed. She had a special ability to anticipate needs and to provide for her guests way beyond expectations. She was a friend to us and was person of hospitality to all. Last April, Marilyn was able to attend the group dinner as a part of the ADS planning meeting held in Northern California at the same hotel, once called the Beverly Heritage. I remember her ordering a second special drink that evening despite Ken saying may times ‘are you sure?’; she was having a wonderful time with friends. I recall her lingering that evening just remembering how much that hotel property was such a part of her life – hosting others.”
MISSING OLD FRIENDS: DJ and Paige left us for Idaho, but that doesn’t mean they left dahlia mania behind. DJ reports that he stored some promising fat brown heads in the Fall and has started separating the chaff from the seeds. We hope DJ and Paige win the Dahlia Genetic Lottery and are surprised with fascinating new varieties of our favorite flower. Sow ‘n Grow, DJ!
DUES DUE: Click HERE to download our Dahlia Society of California membership form. EVERYONE, even dahlia veterans like our DSC officers, need to fill out a NEW form each year. $10 is still a great deal to get newsletters like this, hands on lessons at the Dell, great meetings often with speakers or hands on projects, and of course, what a great way to meet wonderful people! American Dahlia Society is $34 extra. This includes 4 quarterly Dahlia Bulletins and member-only access to the ADS website. Family memberships also available for a little more. ADDED ENTICEMENT: If you re-up by January 15 you receive TWO raffle tickets; if your get your membership form to Devi by January 31, you receive ONE raffle ticket. Go for it NOW.
JUST JANUARY: Pat, Phil and I are still planning to dig our dahlias out. We just have to get together a couple teams and attack! Are you willing to help? Let me know, please. Please, Please, save your GOOD tubers to share with your fellow DSC’s and our tuber sale. We are hoping to have some sort of dahlia swap in February and March. Please process and label your jewels. If you have pulled out all your clumps, plant a cover crop of clover, mustard seed, fava beans, or sweet peas—anything to nitroginate your soil. Ask your local coffee house if they will save you a few bags of coffee grounds. MMMM. Wake up your worms. Now is the time to add bags of chicken manure, leaves and compost to reinvigorate your dirt. Think of it as restocking the dahlia pantry. WEED WEED WEED. Every weed metastasizes when it rains! One rubbish pest burgeons into 100 Visigoths storming the citadel of your defenseless garden plot. Cruise the commercial dahlia sites for tempting new varieties of dahlias to grow. Not only do you delight yourself, but you also will intrigue your fellow growers if you buy a few new varieties. Volunteer to help friends process their clumps. I am usually at the Dell on Saturday mornings. I’ve been taking late season cuttings from such beauties as Belle of the Ball, Wyn’s King Salmon, Bloomquist Candy Corn, Hollyhill Showtime and Jessica. Sandia Brocade and Bloomquist Jeff are still blooming; feeble but recognizable flowers. Amazing. I pop them in my home greenhouse with 18 hours of augmented light and 6 hours of dark. Lou, Devi and Pat begin to mount their humongous cutting operation about now. If you have any named A or AA clumps you might donate to their labors of love, please let them know. We always sell out of our Big Ones at our Tuber Sale.
Yours in dirt,
Webmaster and layout: Devi Joseph
Snailmail: Patricia Hunter
Photo credits: Bergman, Capps, Chilton, Connie, Cowlitz Dahlias, Dailey, Dietz, Hartman, Leone, Ollieu, Struve, Swan Island
Aunt Pearl’s Cranberry Mold
3 3 oz. boxes of raspberry or cherry jello
3 cups boiling water
2 cans jellied cranberry sauce
1 pint sour cream
(Make the day before)
Empty the boxes of jello into a large bowl, Stir in 3 cups of boiling water and stir until the powder is dissolved.
In another bowl with the jellied cranberry sauce, cut it up and use an immersion blender or a hand mixer to break up the jelly.
Add the jelly to the dissolved jello and use the hand mixer to incorporate all the cranberry sauce so it is dissolved.
Add the sour cream and mix.
Use a 5 qt. mold, spray a little oil inside the mold covering all.
Pour the liquid into the mold and place in the refrigerator over night.
The next morning, take the mold out of the fridge and let sit on a counter. When you are ready to unmold, run a thin rubber spatula around the top of the inside edge (just half an inch or so), releasing the edge from the mold. Put your plate on top, turn it upside dow, give it a little shake and it should come out easily.
Note: If you are planning on bringing the dish to a party, you can add another packet of plain gelatin to keep it a little harder, but do not increase the amount of water.