Connie Thompson, Connie’s Dahlias, Nanoose Bay, BC, American Dahlia Society

Biography: My love of dahlias began the summer of 1989 and since that time, I have learned so very much. I belong to the Nanaimo Glad and Dahlia Society and still do, and hands-on I learned the ins and outs of both growing, and showing of dahlias. I kept educating myself thru the club meetings, and at first clerking at dahlia shows listening to Senior Judges picking up as much information as possible as to what to look for to make a superior dahlia.

My late partner who introduced me to the world of dahlias passed away the spring of 2000 and I just kept on growing dahlias. Over the following few years I became a dahlia judge working myself up thru the system of the American Dahlia Society. I had moved by then into a new home with a much smaller garden, but kept on growing the best of the best and showing despite the fact that I had returned to work full-time.

Ten years ago, I met my now husband John, and eventually moved to the farm with him in 2007 and we continued on with Connie’s Dahlias as part of our farm income. We have been slowly building raised beds on the property each year, a tuber storage shed and this year, a 20 ft x 14 ft greenhouse. We have raised beds to accommodate 800+ dahlia plants. By a conscious decision I no longer show or judge at dahlia shows, time just does not permit this.

During the summer months, we sell cut flowers, bouquets, corsages etc for weddings and bouquets which are sold at several locations, and in the Fall all the plants are dug, washed, split, labelled and put away for the winter. I take tubers orders starting actually in the later summer for the following year, and during the winter months on-line thru Connie’s Dahlias website.

John is my shovel and wheelbarrow technician as he calls it, and in charge of watering systems, and it is my job to constantly hone what we grow, importing new varieties that produce both wonderful garden flowers and cut flowers. For those of you who have never grown more than nursery variety dahlias, you have not experienced the wonderful dahlias that are recognized and sought around the world by growers like we are.

We welcome visitors to the garden in August and September, please just contact us and make arrangements for a visit. Mid week is always best as there is usually major cut done every Friday morning.




The World’s Most Prestigious Flower Show – January 9, 2018

The Jan 9th meeting promises to provide a welcome break from the winter doldrums. Come join us for a tour of the Chelsea Garden Show guided by our very own club member, Brian Dodds. He will tour us through show stopping gardens, the introduction of new plants, revised old favorites and cutting edge garden design trends. The Floral Marque is the centre piece of gardens designed by leading names in the Horticulture world.

The Royal Horticultural Society (RHS) organizes the Chelsea Garden Show that was known as The Great Spring Show prior to 1913. It is the most famous flower and garden show in the United Kingdom and perhaps the world attracting garden enthusiasts from around the globe. Tickets have to be pre-sold for the 11-acre display. BBC extensively covers this show and if you want a sneak preview, it can be viewed on YouTube.

Our thanks go out to Brian Dodds for sharing this wonderful trip with our club.