The following lists suggest some excellent sorts in various classes, but not the most costly and modern.
How to Start Old Dahlia Tubers.
Fawn and chocolate.
Yellow, tippedmwith red. Majestic White, edged with purple.
Yellow and buff, tipped red.
Gold, edged with crimson.
Lilac and rose.
Salmon and yellow.
Velvety maroon, with yellow base.
Deep purple maroon.
Pink and primrose.
Yellow and scarlet.
Salmon and bronze.
Deep crimson, tipped green.
Rose, with yellow tips, and white collar.
Mauve-pink, with white collar.
Crimson, with white collar.
Scarlet, with yellow collar.
Tomatoorange, with yellow collar.
Vermilion, with gold ring.
Yellow, flushed rose.
Wine colour, with gold ring.
Crimson-scarlet, paling to rosy edge.
Rose-carmine, with white tips and ring.
Magenta-purple and crimson.
Pink and white.
White, with pale yellow disk.
Yellow shaded pink.
Deep and pale rose.
Cream and pink.
Lilac and yellow.
Yellow, slightly edged mauve.
Salmon and yellow, tipped red.
Dark gold, edged cherry.
1 to 1 1/2 feet tall.
Ivory, edged with pink.
Pink, with white ring.
Yellow, flushed with pink.
Dahlias, of all the classes, may be raised from seed, sown in sandy compost in pans or pots, in a temperature of 650, or more, in March. Seedlings should be potted off separately into thumb-pots and kept near the glass, being shifted into larger pots as their roots fill those they occupy. They can be flowered in pots if desired.
An autumn flower that may well be associated with Dahlias, in beds and groups, is the Belladonna Lily, or Amaryllis Belladonna. It should be placed in a warm spot, but an open sunny one serves as well as the south-wall border it is generally introduced into, if cinders are heaped over the site during winter. For this bulb should live out. Plant it 6 inches deep in late August, or early September, then mulch with leaf-mould. The many flowers are white, flushed with rose. Or the variety Purpurea maxima offers deep rose blooms, with a sweet scent.
The Guernsey Lily, Nerine Sarniensis, scarlet, may be similarly used, but lifted, the bulb dried, and replanted the following August.
Mirabilis Jalapa, The Belle De Nuit Of France, Or The Marvel Of Peru, had a long period of immense popularity, then sank into ill-deserved neglect. The plants come of symmetrical, bushy form (of itself a merit), their leaves are glossy and always fresh-looking, the tubular flowers rise well out of them on all sides as well as at the summit of the bushes, are red, rose, yellow, white, crimson, some curiously mottled, or striped, open at sunset, and perfume the air for many yards. Those blossoms will have passed by the morrow, but there will be many more of the long buds ready to unfurl by another night.
Marvels of Peru may be raised in quantity by seed sown as for Dahlias; they can be lifted annually, if it is desirable, but had better be planted, in June, where they can reside for years in such localities as are fit for Myrtles and Laurustinus. Hot borders by bay windows of villas, in country or seaside towns, are very suitable for them, and their shrub-like appearance will surely be appreciated. I have admired the effect of a couple of bushes of Marvel of Peru flanking house steps. They grow into quite large specimens. Or they are handsome pot subjects for rooms and cool conservatories. Tubers can be bought for starting into growth in April or May.
Mention must be made of Funkias, known formerly as Japanese Day-lilies, which are also half-hardy, though able to live out in warm dry borders. It is preferable to cultivate them in tubs or pots, however, because they are willing to remain attractive very late in the year unless checked by frost. Mostly spoken of now as Plantain Lilies, they rank as herbaceous plants with ornamental foliage, yet their blossom spikes of white or lilac, are charmingly elegant, and also fragrant, and can be increased by division of their crowns.
Plant in September, October, or March. Mulch over them with cinders and leaf-mould, and in April with old cow-manure.
Another idea is to establish them in well-drained parts of waterside gardens and half in shade. They will flourish among hardy Bamboos, for example. Funkia Sieboldiana major, violet blue, with peculiar greyish-blue foliage, is a great contrast to Funkia subcordata grandiflora, a white-bloomer with pea-green leaves. Funkia Fortunei robusta is silvery-lilac, and there is a variety with silver variegated and undulating foliage that is of great service in the greenhouse.