Well, I think we all knew that it was only a matter of time. It was bound to happen, so I figured I would get it over with — let’s talk ‘Cafe au Lait’. If you follow pretty much any flower farmer on Instagram or any other social media, for that matter, you’ve most likely seen them. They’re pink, they’re purple, they’re creamy yellow. They grow in a variety of colors, but I find them to all be equally gorgeous. Let’s get down to business.
As many of you may know, it wasn’t until the last couple years that I finally figured out how to grow a nice dahlia. They key for me was proper support and topping the plants early on (more info on that in the search bar of this site). When you provide the lovely ‘Cafe’ with both of these necessities you will be handsomely (rather, beautifully) rewarded.
According to what I’ve found online, they were introduced in 2005. Around the same time, I remember getting my very first flip phone with a color screen – and I could finally get a plan with “unlimited texting”. Dang, that was really a good year. Anyway, ‘Cafe’ is advertised as producing blooms up to 8″, which has proven to be pretty accurate in my garden. Though, as per usual, the size of the blooms seems to diminish a bit as it gets later and later in the season.
I feel like I could list the things that I love about this variety for hours. The colors do vary a lot. This can be a little tricky when you’re hoping for a bunch of creams, only to harvest a bucket full of pinks. Luckily enough, I’m pretty chill when it comes to what my plants decide to do – as long as they’re happy and healthy, I’m usually content.
Brides have been going bananas for these beauties for awhile now, and have definitely been one of the most requested flowers here. The ‘Cafe’ is also one of the easiest dahlias that I’ve ever grown. It could just be that they especially like my garden’s conditions, but this years plants were extremely strong and vigorous – outgrowing nearly all other varieties which were planted at the same time. In addition to vigor, I’ve not experienced as much insect pressure (comparatively speaking), and have been able to harvest some blooms without treatments of any kind. Definitely a bonus, for me!
All in all, I think this is a great addition, and it will have a place in my garden far into the future. One huge drawback that I have found, however, is that tubers are currently very expensive – some prices being around $20 for one tuber. That price tag was too much for me. A little digging around the internet can help turn up much better deals, around a more realistic price.
Have you grown ‘Cafe au Lait’? Did you love it? Any tips? I’d love to hear your experiences! Hope you have a great day, much love!