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Encyclopedia of Dahlias

By Bill McClaren

Known for their bright colors and dramatic forms, dahlias are enjoying a surge of popularity in today's gardens. From "pompons" to "waterlilies" few flowers can boast such a variety of choices for every garden and gardener. In this delightful and profusely illustrated encyclopedia, noted hybridizer and nurseryman Bill McClaren provides an authoritative account of garden-worthy dahlias for every garden design. Nearly 700 selections are included, complete with notes on their history, awards, and cultural peculiarities. Additional chapters on dahlia care and propagation, dahlia species in nature, hybridizing, and showing dahlias add to this well-rounded overview. Thorough appendices with resources on dahlia societies, nurseries, and gardens complete the book. Gardeners at every level will appreciate the author's clear and useful explanation of the classification schemes for dahlias, which can often intimidate even determined enthusiasts. Every dahlia lover will gain years of reference and enjoyment from Bill McClaren's definitive encyclopedia.

Media reviews

"Draws on McClaren's 50 years of experience in growing dahlias."

—Valerie Sudol, Newark Star-Ledger

"After reading this book, I may have to dig a new bed just for the varieties I know I have to have! Another terrific encyclopedic reference for your gardening library."

—Mary Ann Newcomer, Garden Themes

"A 212-page Bible for dahlia growers. Complete with 855 lush color photographs and written in easy-to-understand language, Encyclopedia of Dahlias has been welcomed by gardeners around the globe."

—Gail Jokerst, Montana Senior News

"A treasure trove of photographs and brief descriptions, and information on growing, propagating, history, and hybridization."

—Sharon Wootton, Olympia Olympian

"This title is recommended for libraries and individuals interested in adding quality works on gardening and plants."

—Nancy Burford, E-Streams

"Loaded with beautiful images and useful information ... a perfect resource for growers."

Big Sky Journal

"The Encylclopedia of Dahlias offers more color photographs than any other book on this flower."

Bloomin' News

"Use this book as a guide to finding your dream dahlia."

—Amy Stewart, North Coast Journal

"Every dahlia lover will gain years of reference and enjoyment from Bill McClaren's definitive encyclopedia."

Garden Hotline Newsletter

"A comprehensive study that serious gardeners will want to have in their collection."

—Suzanne Hively, Cleveland Plain Dealer

"A comprehensive guide to American-grown dahlias."

Northern Gardener

"A beautful book for anyone who finds dahlias endearing."

—Bill McClaren, Northwest Gardens

"In addition to being a mine of information it is attractively presented and most generously illustrated."

—John Grimshaw, Herbertia

"An excellent read about using dahlias for any garden size, whether a single pot on a patio or an acre of land."

—Thomas Mickey, Brockton Enterprise

"A must have book for anyone interested in growing dahlias."

—Adele Kleine, Current Books on Gardening & Botany

"Provides an account of worthy dahlias for every garden design."

Michigan Gardener

"In addition to providing loads of useful cultural information, this text will delight you with more than 800 color photos of dahlias in every size, shape and color."

—Roberta McQuaid, Springfield Journal-Register

"Useful for novice and expert alike, this encyclopedia belongs in any reference collection."

—Rachael Green, American Reference Books Annual

"Offers more color photographs than any other book on this flower. The stunning photos are arranged by type for ease of use by serious growers of dahlias."

Bloomin' News

"Mr. McLaren is an authority on the subject and here disseminates a lifetime of knowledge about growing this ornamental favorite."

—Pete Prown, Green Scene

"One has to have good, strong and healthy plants. This book will help you achieve this; of that there is no doubt at all."

—John E. Bryan, Gardening Newsletter

"If dahlias are your interest, you must have this excellent reference tool!"

Floral and Nursery Times

"The first comprehensive dahlia book ... Anyone with even a mild interest in the flower will be inspired."

—Heidi Gaiser, Daily Inter Lake

"Uses clear, concise writing to explain care, propagation, hybridizing and showing of his favorite flower."

—Marianne Binetti, Seattle Post-Intelligencer

About the author

Bill McClaren

Bill McClaren has been growing and showing dahlias for nearly 50 years. For the past 20 years, he has hybridized all forms of dahlias; over 100 of his varieties are listed in the American Dahlia Society's ADS Classification and Handbook of Dahlias. After retiring from a 30-year career as an educator, he owned and operated, together with his wife, Alpen Gardens, a commercial dahlia nursery, for 20 years. He is a member of the American Dahlia Society, serving 10 years as research chairman, and is the founder of the Montana Dahlia Society. He is a Senior Judge and instructs dahlia judging schools throughout the northwestern United States and Canada. His articles have been published in the Bulletin of the American Dahlia Society and Dahlias of Today.

Read more about Bill McClaren

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