Fellow author Emma Lane takes over my blog today with a discussion of fall flowers and plants.
My experience, after working in the plant nursery for more years than I care to count, is that some plants will perform admirably in the summer but must be stored for winter. Dahlias are a great example. Although fairly expensive, they are certainly worth investing for their gorgeous blossoms, but the fat tubers must be dug up and brought inside to a cool dark spot for the winter. There are several ways to care for them, but important is to keep them relatively dry in storage. Perhaps wrapped in newspaper and tucked safety inside a paper bag and stored on an upper shelf away from the damp floor.
After digging, the large tuber may be separated for an abundance of new plants in the next year. Each piece should contain at least three ‘eyes.” Remove as much soil as possible before storing.
Plant out in the spring when all danger of frost has left. Dahlias are a large plant and, although bred for the cut flower market with strong stems, should be staked for protection from a destructive wind. Choices are endless from small, short border varieties to large dinner plate blossoms. Colors are vivid with many bi-colored types. The Red Ball has proven to be a prolific producer of long stemmed blooms perfect for the vase or an arrangement. Full sun seems best although half day is probably adequate. Enjoy! Nothing says Fall like a large bouquet of dahlias for your indoor pleasure.
Plant as an annual, or if you are one of those very lucky gardeners, cover with mulch and winter over. In the spring carefully cut back until the 4th of July for a compact plant.
The richness of fall color presented prominently in my Cozy Mystery, Murder in the Neighborhood, a novel which introduces you to Detective Kevin Fowler and the intriguing murders which infect this small town Americana. The series follows the detective, colleagues, friends, and lovers through a whirlwind of events, good and bad, over the next three novels.
A killer is attacking respectable citizens in picturesque Hubbard, NY, and leaving corpses on their front steps in the middle of the day. Detective Fowler isn’t certain who causes him to lose the most sleep, a certain sexy reporter with bouncing curls and sparkling black eyes, or the elusive psychopath creating panic in his small-town community. Together, the detective and the reporter race to find the monster in their midst and return the town to the desirable place where people come to raise their families in peace and contentment. Can they sort through their differences to find romance even as they search for a determined stalker with murder on his mind? The clock ticks down on a man in a rage with a deadly mission.
Read more of the cozy mysteries by Janis Lane on Amazon
Janis Lane is the pen-name for gifted author Emma Lane who writes cozy mysteries as Janis, Regency as Emma, and spice as Sunny Lane.
She lives in Western New York where winter is snowy, spring arrives with rave reviews, summer days are long and velvet, and fall leaves are riotous in color. At long last she enjoys the perfect bow window for her desk where she is treated to a year-round panoramic view of nature. Her computer opens up a fourth fascinating window to the world. Her patient husband is always available to help with a plot twist and encourage Emma to never quit. Her day job is working with flowers at Herbtique and Plant Nursery, the nursery she and her son own.
Look for information about writing and plants on Emma’s new website. Leave a comment or a gardening question and put a smile on Emma’s face.