Kathy’s Dahlias…It’s Up to the Bees
August 26, 2014 by solarbeez
August 16, 2014…This anemone dahlia serves as a rest stop.
Looking over Kathy’s dahlias at some of the 2500 kinds that must be whittled down to 100.
Kathy grows dahlias…lots of them. Knowing of my interest in bees, she has explained how bees have helped her to grow different kinds of dahlias. For many years, she hand pollinated the dahlias she wanted to hybridize. About a year and a half ago, a swarm of bees chose a nearby cedar tree as their future home and started visiting her dahlias. Kathy says she gets much better results from the bees’ pollination. She collected the seeds after pollination and grew over 2500 kinds. Of the 2500, she will select only about 100 that make the grade. (I’m glad I don’t have to decide, I like them all.)
This is one of 2500 varieties that Kathy grew this year. She must whittle it down to about “100 keepers.”
This is known as a giraffe pattern dahlia. Kathy says she is indebted to the bees for their pollination services. I am intrigued by the variety of styles.
An orchid form dahlia
August 16, 2014…Since the bees adopted this high up cavity in a cedar tree, Kathy has benefited from them pollinating her dahlias. In the video you can see how high up it is with a steady stream of bees flying in and out.
Is this a keeper or will it go into the compost? Kathy hasn’t decided yet, but she does like what she sees. It started opening up yesterday and will look different tomorrow, “it’s promising,” she says.
Kathy says she is indebted to the bees for making this one which she is planning to keep.
Sunspot…a mignon dahlia creation that Kathy has let us grow for our bees.