To see the full original newsletter with all the photos click here to get the pdf: May 2013 Newsletter
NEXT MEETING: May 14 @ 7:30 @ 9th and Lincoln
Program: Erik delivers his informative and funny lecture about a complete dahlia cycle year with wonderful photos. Bring your family and friends. We’ll also tempt you with more terrific cuttings and tubers to fill in critical spots in your garden or to give as gifts that grow on giving. Bring your late sprouting tubers and cuttings to share. Who will bring goodies to share with your fellow hungry DCSers?
PAT LAUDS DSC EFFORTS
I feel I must acknowledge the extraordinary efforts that members of the Society made before and during our sale. It goes without saying that the cuttings produced by Lou and Devi (and me as a paper pusher) were absolutely outstanding, due to the tremendousnumber of hours spent in the greenhouse as well as their expertise. Those who brought the cuttings to the County Fair Building on a hot afternoon: Devi and her friends Irene and Shelly, Lou, Tinnee, Soc, Tony, (who drove trucks) and Deborah. Those who were at the County Fair building to help the transporters to bring in the plants (over 1000 cuttings): Debbie Frank and John Dale. Those who set up the tables: Deborah, John, Vince McCormick, Mitzu, Tony and Soc and sorted the cuttings – everyone I have named. And to have the place ready for the sale with time to spare. I hope I didn’t miss anyone!!
And the day of the sale: everyone was there early and ready to go and each and every one of us played a big role in the success of the sale and attracting new members to our Society. But especial thanks to John and Donna Mani for major kitchen duty and Susan Barbour, Mike and Colleen for table toting and sweeping at the end of the day when most of us were completely beat. And of course John Dale quietly did his usual thing of keeping things moving and ensuring we left the place tidy. I don’t know about anyone else, but I went home and immediately got I into bed.
TUBER SALE SUCCESS
On Sat. Warren, Devi, Sue, Deborah, Jamie, Mitzu, Mike, Marilyn, Phil, Martha, Soc, Roger, and Marie, all donated tubers. So many of you had helped at previous tuber affairs, that you fell immediately into sorting tubers by size and variety. John Mani made sure we all wore “ask me” name badges. Martha drummed up enthusiasm with the hordes waiting in line outside. Mike and Marie collected email names for next year before our doors even opened this year! Devorah and Kathy sold 21 memberships, ADS Classification Books, and T-shirts. Deborah, Paula and Joe took in moolah after Valeria, Sue, Marilyn, and Kathy counted up the $3, $5 or $6 plant, and the $1 orphans and $3 tubers. Those with magnifying glasses really helped identify eyes on tubers. Tinnee, John, Pat, Mike and Len checked to make sure every one was viable. Susan, Colleen, Frank and David helped shoppers envision glorious dahlias dancing in their gardens soon. By 11:30 we sat down to our reward: potluck! Thanks to the Manis for not only plates and cutlery, but also for the splendid cold cuts. Lou filled the ‘fridge with cold sodas and waters. Who brought the delicious dolmas???? Mike’s brownies melted double chocolaty in the mouth. (Thank you Janet!) Joe reports that this was our second best tuber sale yet and that we will pay our meeting room rental, our auditorium for the show and miscellaneous expenses for the next year! Thank you for all your help!
Chicken Curry Casserole (Deborah Dietz)
2 cups chopped up chicken
2 onions, chopped medium
3 carrots, peeled and chopped finely
1 hank parsley, chopped finely including stems
4 blades of celery, chopped medium
2 lemons juiced (I used Dingwall lemons)
1 whole head of garlic diced
5 cups of cooked brown rice
½ cup of raisins or more
Plenty of curry powder, salt, pepper, hot sauce to taste
Sauté the chicken in curry powder. Put aside. Sauté carrots, celery, onions together. Mix with chicken and spices and lemon. You can either add water and cook the rice with all the spices and chicken (as I did) or make the rice in advance and add at the end. So glad so many people liked it!
NEW HILLSIDE GIRLS!
Sue and Valeria, long-time volunteers at the Dell, have graciously agreed to team up to care for two of the rows that our vice president, Frank, has tended for so long. Their first job: weeding! They literally gave blood building gopher cages according to the Tinnee Lee pattern. Vince dug 15 gopher basket holes. Tinnee continues on her Western Half o’the hill and Erik and Nicholas have expanded to the upper tier on the Eastern side. Deborah thanks Tony for his planting in the tear drop. Volunteers are always appreciated on Saturday mornings.
A DAHLIA LEGACY
Nicholas Gaensler was born into one of San Francisco’s dahlia growing families in 2002. Soon thereafter, his only remaining grandmother, Virgie, became ill. A longtime time friend and bridge partner of Virgie’s, Anne Hyde Patterson, stepped into the breach and has doted on Nicholas ever since, hosting his family whenever they visited grandmother Virgie. When Kevin Larkin of Corralitos Gardens donated naming rights to a prime new seedling to the 2011 ADS Show fundraiser, the Gaensler’s won the bid and named the new cultivar “Anne Hyde.” Nicholas Gaensler, now 10, planted 5 cuttings in his first year as grower, and won best junior entry and best triple entry in the 2012 Dahlia Society of California Show–his first competition! Nick was the first to win with this new variety, which went on to further wins at the ADS Show in Oregon. Anne Hyde was delighted, as was her entire family! If you’d like to name a completely unique genetic dahlia entity after someone special, ask Erik how to go about it.
Jamie reports “I now have 4850 tubers planted in gallon pots in rented greenhouse space that will be used for our entire field stock.” Jamie will be selling tubers, cuttings and plants at variousFarmers’ Markets around the North Bay until his cut dahlias come in.
MIGHTY MAGNIFICENT MAY
You can continue to plant through the first two weeks of June. I try to add some balanced fertilizer (like 10-10-10 or 14-14-14) and Bayers 3-in One pellets into each hole. Swish it up so your tuber does not rest directly on the chemicals. Pound your stake in first so you don’t impale your “potato.” Adhere a label immediately. Do NOT rely on remembering tomorrow, or even an hour later. All the Dellians keep annotated maps of where each cultivar grows in addition to labels on stakes. Mike Schelp uses amazing xl color-coded grids. I also build an xl sheet with form, color, size, ADS classification number, source, and spot in the Dell. I can immediately see if I’ve overlooked a form or type; it also comes in really handy at show time. If you’ve planted a cutting, gently sprinkle it with 2-3 cups of water.
Lou and Pat make basins around their youngsters to keep the water from washing all over everywhere. These cuttings will need a little water every day for the first 2 weeks. Tubers should NOT be watered until you see the first wee green shoots. Tubers do not have roots; without roots they cannot absorb moisture; they simply turn to mush.
Avoid this tragedy. Do NOT plant cuttings until you have adequate snail/slug/earwig protection handy. Otherwise you will have provided an expensive pest buffet. In areas where gophers gambol, you MUST put your tubers/cuttings in gopher baskets. To plant in baskets, first dig your hole deep enough that only the top inch to two inches of the basket will remain above ground. Second, place your basket in the hole. Tinnee likes to put an extra sheet of mesh below the basket so every time the gopher tries to butt into the basket it hits TWO layers of thwarting material. Third, fill half the basket with soil. Fourth, add your fertilizer et. al. Fifth, place tuber in basket.
Lastly, cover your tuber with @ 2-3” of soil. As your dahlia grows, you can fill in the rest of the soil until it is level with your garden. Check out Tinnee, Valeria and Sue’s hillside sections to spot their gopher baskets. Since I left some of my clumps in the Dell over the winter, many sprouts are erupting. I have been gently digging down and removing tubers with healthy green leaves so that there remains only one or two main stalks. The remainders I will pot up and bring to our May meeting for sale. With last winter so mild and our April averaging more than 20 degrees above normal, most of the clumps are growing like gangbusters. I’ve already pinched out the centers of many, disbudded a few and I’m looking forward to first double blooms by mid-May!
Yours in Dirt,
Dahlia Society of California, Inc., San Francisco, CA — Copyrighted
Editor: Deborah Dietz
Page layout: Mike Willmarth
Photo credits: Dietz, Gaensler, Mani
Originally Organized In 1917
In San Francisco the Dahlia was adopted as the
Official Flower of San Franciscoon October 4, 1926
by its Board of Supervisors