Viewing post #1105683 by teddahlia

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You are viewing a single post made by teddahlia in the thread called Novelty Forms.
Dec 5, 2014 10:17 AM CST
Name: Ted
We enjoy breeding new dahlias!
Many of you have not mentioned that Eugene Kenyon, the breeder of River's Dahlias, has been on quest to breed a new form of dahlia that many call a double orchid. The first seedling that he grew was River's Novelty. He personally disliked so much that he was going to cull it. It so happened that a friend was visiting the garden at exactly the right time and fell in love with it and rescued it from destruction. He gave all the tubers to her and she grew it for a couple of years and everybody loved it. She then entered it into a show and it was selected as the best novelty flower in the show and there was lots of competition there. Mr. Kenyon sheepishly asked if he could get some stock and went on to enter it in trial gardens where it passed easily. It has gone on to be one of the big winners in novelty dahlias.

And the form: At the Canby trial garden, a senior judge marked on his evaluation sheet that it was a cactus dahlia. Before he could submit this erroneous classification to the director someone pointed out to him that the ray florets were rolled in the opposite direction, in the same manner as an orchid dahlia. This flower was a fully double orchid. It passed easily.

Mr. Kenyon went on to gather every other variety that was a double orchid to begin breeding the form. He has introduced a few and I believe that River's Sonia(or Sonja?) is another one. I bet the mop on a stick was one too. They are somewhat harder to breed as the petals do not naturally roll that direction. And the color is difficult too because when you look at the flower, you are seeing the back of the petal and in most dahlias the color on the back of the petal is less intense(and frequently even a different color).

So again, maybe this is more than you wanted to know.

We like to place a sign on our porch that says: We are in the garden. Really, we are always in the garden.

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