Fringed Apache Dahlia Plant
A Cactus-flowered Marvel!
The blooms begin in late summer and continue well into fall on plants 40 inches high. Give them some support to help hold up the huge, heavy blooms; you don't want to miss a minute of the show they put on!
Dahlia is a sun-lover, happiest in rich, well-drained, moist soil. It is hardy only through zone 8 in the north, so you may want to dig it up at season's end and store it indoors to replant in spring. It forms a tuber, and is easy to tuck away in a shoebox filled with clean kitty litter or vermiculite.
In the vase, 'Fringed Apache' lasts more than a week, stealing the thunder of all neighboring blooms and inspiring many compliments. Of course, it does exactly the same thing in the garden, so you have a tough choice to make!
Keep your Dahlias well-fed and watered, give them plenty of sun, and they will reward you with big crops year after year. Such a fine source of late-season color! Zones 8-10.
|Zone||8 - 10|
|Bloom Season||Late Summer - Mid Fall|
|Plant Height||3 ft 6 in|
|Plant Width||24 in|
|Bloom Size||6 in - 8 in|
|Additional Characteristics||Bloom First Year, Butterfly Lovers, Cut-and-Come-Again, Flower, Long Bloomers|
|Bloom Color||Light Cream, Light Gold, Multi-Color, Red|
|Foliage Color||Dark Green|
|Light Requirements||Full Sun|
|Moisture Requirements||Moist, well-drained|
|Resistance||Deer Resistance, Heat Tolerant|
|Soil Tolerance||Normal, loamy|
|Uses||Border, Containers, Cut Flowers, Fall Color, Outdoor|
|Restrictions||Canada, Guam, Hawaii, Puerto Rico, Virgin Islands|
- Butterflies like a lot of sunlight, so locate your garden in a sunny area.
- If you live in a windy location, plant your butterfly-attracting plants near a building, fence, or hedge to protect them.
- Plant a variety of nectar-rich plants, as well as shrubs and evergreens for shelter.
- Since many butterflies and native flowering plants have co-evolved, try to put in some that are native to your area. The Lady Bird Johnson Wildlife Center provides lists of plants native to states and regions.
- Certain colors are particularly attracting to butterflies – red, yellow, pink, purple, or orange blooms that are clustered or flat-topped, with a short flower tubes are especially attractive to adult butterflies.
- Avoid using pesticides, especially around nectar-producing plants.
- Provide a shallow source of water – try a birdbath with pebbles lining the bowl.
- Place a rock in a sunny spot for butterfly basking and resting.
- Create a "puddling area" by digging a shallow hole filled with compost or manure where rainwater will collect and release essential salts and minerals.
- If you want butterflies to breed in your garden, put in some caterpillar food plants, such as parsley, milkweeds, asters, thistles, violets, clover, grasses, and Queen Anne’s Lace.
- Since butterflies need nectar throughout the entire adult phase of their lives, try to create a design that will allow for a continuous bloom – when one stops blooming, another starts.
As the deer population has boomed and
food has become scarcer, they have become more aggressive. In some areas deer will
strip your garden bare, leaving nothing green or flowery behind. While there is no such thing as a completely deer-proof garden, there
are some effective things you can do to protect your garden from these
Use physical barriers
A High Fence
Deer can jump pretty high, but a fence higher than eight feet (higher on an up-slope) and flush with the ground will keep any deer out.
They are a much easier and less expensive solution. Deer generally will not try to jump electric fences, but will rather try to climb through the wires, receiving a deterring shock.
An even less extreme physical option is to put bird netting over your larger and more susceptible plants.
Plant Deer-resistant VarietiesHerbs, some conifers, and many flowers are some of the best deer-resistant plants. More fragrant plants will often deter predation. Planting just a few deer-resistant plants will limit grazing of your other plants. Remember, "deer-resistant" does not mean deer-proof. A hungry animal will eat just about anything.
Having a dog In the FamilyOwning a dog, especially a big dog will almost always keep deer from approaching your home. Just the scent of the dog will keep most deer away, and if your dog lives outside you will probably never see any deer.
For most gardeners, it is a combination of different solutions that works best. Every gardener has to find the solution that works best in their garden.