Surprise, surprise

Mount Angel, OR(Zone 8a)

I too was out mowing my lawn this morning and looking at the various plants as I circle the beds with the mower and I couldn't believe my eyes. Can you guess what is up? There are three shoots showing about 2 inches tall. Yeppers,


I am going to have to mulch that baby as we could easily still get some frost.

So is the GRITDIG 07 off and running???????

Albany, OR(Zone 8a)

That isn't fair!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Joann, you are cheating!!!!!!!!!!! LOL LOL LOL
I have been looking at mine each day because there were a bunch of slug eggs buried in the mint compost so have been squashing them!
Ohhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh, I want mine to have a shoot so bad!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Annie, what does yours look like????

Oh Joann, I am so so so jealous. I need that dahlia tree in that corner!!!


Mount Angel, OR(Zone 8a)

Daisy dear, how could I be cheating? Do you think I have got a heating cable running out there or something? LOL Well. I don't LOL I was as surprised as you. The last couple of days have been really warm and we finished planting all our filbert trees. Yahoo. What a job.

Issaquah, WA(Zone 7a)

Your GRITDIG is off and running Joann! I will check under my mulch later, but all I saw a couple days ago were more sprouted sunflower seeds, just like when you visited Carol! Busy varmints.

Here's a welcome sight on the kitchen window thermometer, however, and why I'm heading right back outdoors. Baby, it's hot out there!

Thumbnail by Poochella
Appleton, WI(Zone 5a)

Not the happiest dahlia camper here as it hasn't been above 35 in 4 days now.

Good job Jo

Mount Angel, OR(Zone 8a)

Thanks, Al, but I really can't take any credit; we have some dry warm weather. So I guess Mother Nature or the Almighty deserves the credit.

Boxford, MA(Zone 6a)

What is GRITDIG? I'm new to this.

I DID order a DI. I was ordering hostas from Plant Delights (friends don't let friends plant annuals- LOL) and I saw a DI "Double or Nothing" for a reasonable price and pounced. I guess it's not as big as the standard DI and sounds good to put amidst the lilacs.

You may well ask what I haven't ordered.

I'm SO JEALOUS!!! You guys, it's 20 degrees out. We had 5" of snow Wednesday!!! Our daytime temps won't see above 40, and now they're talking about a huge storm at sea. That worries me b/c they can "back in" on us; all of the worst storms in history here are the ones at sea that turn West and sit there for days...

Mount Angel, OR(Zone 8a)

Jax, last year some of us grew the dahlia imperialis and compared notes for the season, measuring its overall height and how close we could get to bloom. It was a friendly competition. I ordered my original DI from Plant's Delight. I feel for you with all that cold and snow. We can be rainy sometimes till almost the 4 th of July but we are having instant summer these last two days. Rain is headed back in though.

Boxford, MA(Zone 6a)

We DO need rain b/c NO SNOW this winter! I love snow, but let's have it in January. This past January was in the 60s much of the time. We had a teaser spell of warm weather in March, then took the plunge to where we are now. I have so much bed prep to do; now the soil has frozen back over :-( !!!

Albany, OR(Zone 8a)

Hey, that is a great idea. A heating cable. Hum??? Next year!!! LOL LOL

Well, am glad you are finished with the filbert planting. I bet that was a job!

I just looked at mine again. Nadda, nothing!

But I looked back at my pictures last year and I had a shoot that was like 2" long on May 5th. So that is a long ways away. So..............maybe....................

Albany, OR(Zone 8a)

Wow, Annie, you are hot!!!!
I don't know what the high was here but in the shade it was up to 80 deg. one time I looked. I have been sweating today and in shorts for the first time this year, LOL

Albany, OR(Zone 8a)


YEAH, YEAH, YEAH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


I got a shoot! I got a shoot! I got a shoot!!! YEAH!

I was just looking at it today and guess what! Yep, I got a shoot, LOL LOL LOL

So...............................I get to see it grow again!!!

I hope I get a couple more shoots but.................I will take one................

So Joann, yep, the race is on again......................

Annie, look closely again tho you are a bit colder there but I bet you will have one!!!

I know you guys think I am crazy but...................... I so enjoyed watching it grow last year thanks to DrDon!!!


Thumbnail by daisyruffles
Delhi, IA

Live plants up and starting to thrive!!!!!! Believe it or not with daytime temps in the low 30's for highs for about a week and wind chills in the teens, my tulips look like they actually froze off. Never had that happen in 49 gardens!!!!! Didn't know it was possible to "freeze off" tulips. Or since the flower shoot wasn't up maybe I will have flowers without leaves____like the surprise lilies. Daffodils must be tougher than tulips. Tulip foliager actually froze. Will it recover upon thawing out? Mother Nature always has something new for us to talk about. Mowing grass___not for another month at least.

We had a week in the 80's during March and everything jumped ahead. Now freezing conditions.

Have about 60 pots of our favorites under lights in the basement.

Mount Angel, OR(Zone 8a)

Well, those two days of summer slipped back into our rainy rainy usual routine. It still feels warmish and the grass is growing like gangbusters but I am still grateful the filberts are planted. Tulips are in full bloom here and they are the prettiest Easter eggs for this time of year. Lots of color. Lilacs are beginning to pop. I do love spring.

Albany, OR(Zone 8a)

Jam, hope you don't lose everything in your garden. But mother nature is very interesting the past couple years, everywhere in the world!

Yep me too. I have what you have coming along too, Joann.

(Arlene) Southold, NY(Zone 7a)

Is there one preferred DI over the others?

Mount Angel, OR(Zone 8a)

I know Pirl there is a white and a purple one and the more traditional one I think is the purple. It grows larger. Annie's Annuals in the Bay Area has this plant and they are cheaper than Plants Delights.

I see only the white one on her website.Might be she is out of the other. Good Luck.

So Carol are we off and running with GRITDIG ) 07 then. LOL

Albany, OR(Zone 8a)

Yep, we sure are. But already you are ahead, sigh...................... LOL LOL
Maybe being in the ground the past 2 years has helped you???

I need to go out and put more slug bait around my precious shoot plus some coffee grounds. They say slugs don't like coff. gr. so shall see if they stay away.

Mount Angel, OR(Zone 8a)

I put pumice around my plant after I saw the shoots hoping the same, I was thinking the slugs wouldn't crawl across that stuff.

I hope the Ted's choice clump is still available for me. I would love to get it for my niece's wedding. :) Joann

(Arlene) Southold, NY(Zone 7a)

Thanks, Lenjo.

Boxford, MA(Zone 6a)

Pirl, Von Bourgondien has one for $12.99.
They have nice tubers. I ordered my DI from Plant Delights b/c it is a shorter, double-flowered variety that might actually have a chance to bloom for me (who knows what the fall will be like? Spring is now winter!).

(Arlene) Southold, NY(Zone 7a)

Thanks, Jax. I was on PD this morning looking and that's what prompted me to ask about them.

Albany, OR(Zone 8a)

Hey, Joann, that is a great idea. I have some perlite so that sould be about the same. Will do that!
As for the 'Ted's Choice'. Yep, it is there and one of the plant is already putting out green shoots! So I need to get that other one in the back for you real soon! Maybe I can dig it up this weekend.
What are you up to this weekend then! Want to meet in Salem to pass it on to you?

Mount Angel, OR(Zone 8a)

Possible, Carol. Have you ever visited Deepwood Estate in Salem? I love it, an old Victorian home with a nice garden. Nice structure to the garden but not a lot of flowers; more shrubs.

Mount Angel, OR(Zone 8a)

Carol, I am going to a wholesale clematis nursery this week not far from my daughter, Katy. Is there anything you would like me to look for. Most of their gallon sizes are $6.50. If you have a particular variety it would be helpful. I just got a cartmanni, Avalanche. It was totally new to me this year and it is evergreen and a little smaller as clematis can be; only 8 feet. The foliage is really different too.

Issaquah, WA(Zone 7a)

Oh you Oregonians, so far ahead of us further north!

I have shoots! Several of them. The only problem is that they are stray sunflowers planted by the mice/squirrels; new ones since when Carol visited LOL! There is nothing growing in my DI container except those and a bucket of bulbs I pulled out of it to plant the DI in the first place.

Albany, OR(Zone 8a)

Hum, both places sound interesting. No, never have been to either. As for a clematis, I am not picky. That one you just got sounds nice tho. And an evergreen too.

Yep, Annie, you are so slow up there, LOL Come on. Speed up.................LOL I sure hope you do get a few sprouts tho.......................we need you in the race for sure too.....................LOL

Lincoln, United Kingdom(Zone 8a)

D.i. is certainly consistent! My two bigger ones I grew last year are in the greenhouse, I noticed them shooting on Saturday which was the 7th, they were in the garage over winter and I had moved them to the GH not long ago.

This is one of them taken Sat., 3 shoots

Thumbnail by wallaby1
Lincoln, United Kingdom(Zone 8a)

The other has 2 shoots, we had some warm, sunny days and temps went high in the greenhouse, up to 16 or 17C (61-61F) outside. Yesterday it was about the same as today, cloudy, breezy and feels cold at 56F.

We haven't had rain for at least 2 weeks, my water barrels are empty, we had very little rain again at all this winter. April showers are absent.

The one I put in the ground last year I noticed had a shoot through on Sunday! I took this just now, the old stem is about 2" thick at the bottom. I didn't mulch mine but it is near the south wall, we had a mild winter, some frosts to -5C (23F) or less, one down to -9C (16F).

Thumbnail by wallaby1
Albany, OR(Zone 8a)

Ah, how cute your shoots are. I am so excited that we have more and more with new growth this year.
THE RACE IS ON.......................................................

Lincoln, United Kingdom(Zone 8a)

I hope that little shoot will grow up to be at least as big as its momma. I think they are earlier this year, will have to check back.


At the starting ground, in first place is Lenjo, followed by a dubious joint second with daisyruffles and Wallaby1.

Poochella has stuck in the ground, let's hope she will get a boost and join the rest on the race upwards to victory!

Mount Angel, OR(Zone 8a)

The gauntlet has been thrown, Janet, yours look better than mine. Yes, Carol, you will definitely see bigger healthier than ever plants. This is my third year in this location and so I will be curious to compare to the previous two.

Come on Annie, we are waiting.

Jax and Jam and any others I hope you can join us. Mendy where are you?

Boxford, MA(Zone 6a)

I am in. Do I get a handicap b/c I'm growing a different cultivar? According to Plant Delights, it grows as high as DI, but it seems to imply that it flowers earlier. If it's just height, I guess we are on equal ground, except that I have NO IDEA what I'm doing...

Also, you have to tell me what "GRITDIG" is a portmanteau of.

Carol, you mentioned seeing slug eggs... I wouldn't know a slug egg if I hatched one myself! They must be tiny. I have lots of the little slugs; no mega-18 inch monsters.

(Arlene) Southold, NY(Zone 7a)

Tiny colorless masses - smaller than pencil erasers - more like perlite jello!

Lincoln, United Kingdom(Zone 8a)


(The) Great Race Internationally (of) Tree Dahlia imperialis Girls.

If any men join the race we will have to change it to 'guys'.

Flowers do get points!

Albany, OR(Zone 8a)

Jax, those darn slug eggs are usually underneath the mulch. They look like Osmocote fertilizer almost. But are opauge (sp?)(don't have my Google speller here). Usually in a mass group of eggs. I usually end up squishing them, each one by one. Sometimes they are harder to squish. They are like smaller than pearl size. If I get time or find another mass of them, will take a pic for you before I kill...................LOL

Yep, who gets to the open flower stage is the true winner!!!

Boxford, MA(Zone 6a)

OK, Zone 6 Warrior that I am, I'm in. It pays to gamble; like I said, who knows what climate change will bring us this November. I might be 80 and the South may be under a glacier!!!

Maybe we can each assign the "G" to whatever we feel is appropriate; in my case, Goofball!

BBBRRRR it's feels like it's 20 below out there!!! I tried some garden work but it is too cold even for me! I think I am just sick of not having ONE DAY above 50 this year. The weather forecaster said that our Easter was colder than last Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year's! I remember working in the garden (weeding) right up until the Holidays.

Issaquah, WA(Zone 7a)

Jax, if you're really slow in producing a plant, but remain nice throughout this cutthroat, hairpulling, kicking, screaming, growing match, you can be Miss Congeniality LOL! Tee hee, just had to enter something!!!!

How about this: My lovely little D.Imp preparing for a move in locations last year. sigh......

Thumbnail by Poochella
(Arlene) Southold, NY(Zone 7a)

I recall that photo when I asked the dumb blonde question about why the dahlias are planted next to a tree, not knowing the "tree" was the mother dahlia. Sigh.

Issaquah, WA(Zone 7a)

We would have forgotten all about your question Pirl. I am hoping mine didn't freeze out in the big chill of December. There are new roots visible and I take that as a fairly promising sign.

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