Kind of like in the old days when I tried to write in my diary every day...except I'm determined to keep it up with this!
A kind of uneventful day although I did manage to dig up half the dahlias and divide the tubers. I successfully grew a beautiful dahlia garden this past summer after digging up my mothers dahlias. I couldn't bear to leave them in the ground because they were her pride and joy and so I spent a miserable week dealing with these massive root systems. Mama always dug them up each fall but would put the whole root ball in storage over winter so they just kept getting bigger each year I guess. They were such a pain to get out of the ground, wash, dry out and then cut up. I wish I had a picture of them in that state and me with only little pruners to work with and a bread knife!
It was pretty easy this year as the amount of tubers averaged to about a dozen per plant and I had used good soil which I laboriously prepared in the spring so I hardly had to dig in the semi frozen (!) ground to remove the plants. Dividing the roots with really big branch lopping pruners was easy-peasy! I also discovered that if you pull on the tubers most of them will come off quite neatly with the 'eye' portion. It remains to be seen if these will grow next year as I haven't heard of anyone doing that. Obviously you can't use the tuber if it snaps at the neck and I kept expecting that to happen but surprisingly it seems as if dahlias are designed to cleave cleanly at the tubers.
I plan on writing a proper gardening article about dahlia propagation (from an amateur gardeners point of view) and will have proper pictures then.
It snowed today- a wet, heavy snow mixed with rain and then finally turned to mist and now it's stopped. As I mentioned before, it's cold enough to freeze water in the top layer of soil. Maple Ridge is exceedingly unpleasant to live in during the winter- that famous damp chill of the British Columbia coast is full blown right now. I'm sure even the ducks think it's nasty. As do the otters. I saw an otter last month. For the first time in my life.
My husband and I were at Pitt Addington Wildlife Management Area which is located in Grant Narrows Regional Park in Pitt Meadows, B.C. . The marsh had a reasonably thick layer of ice covering it and what first appeared to be an old tree stump frozen in the water turned out to be an otter. He seemed to be sunning himself but as we got closer he slipped into the water and popped back up a few meters away- literally popping his head through the ice! He was pretty entertaining. :)
Grant Narrows Park has striking scenery. I made my second largest panoramic image - about a 180 degree or so field of view from about 10 photographs. The bigger view picture is just over 300 kb. in size and over 8000 pixels wide! lol lol lol Only fair to warn anyone who wants to see it in all it's...immenseness!
Pretty Big View