Old House Gardens
From America’s Expert Source for Heirloom Flower Bulbs
"Though preservation is our mission, bulbs drop out of our catalog every year.

Sometimes it’s because the harvest was too small. Sometimes it’s because they’re widely available elsewhere and don’t need our help. And sometimes it’s because we’ve lost our only known source due to severe weather (cold, drought, etc.), health problems (a debilitating stroke), or economic woes (small farmers are always at risk).

The good news is that, in time, we’re often able to return these bulbs to our catalog. So here’s a list of many we’ve offered in the past. For an alert the moment they’re available again, subscribe to our free email newsletter. Or to find a similar bulb, try our easy Advanced Bulb Search."

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ARUBANITA, 1956
Care-free and bright, this happy little dahlia may well remind you of vacationing in sunny Aruba. (It’s named for a popular 1950s dance tune by the composer of Aruba’s national anthem.) It came to us from France where it’s still a great favorite, and we’ve been loving its abundant, classic, ruby-red blossoms in our trial garden and bouquets. 4-5” 4-5 feet tall, from Oregon. Last offered in spring 2006. We may offer it again someday.
BETTY ANNE, 1928
This lovely, 79-year-old pompon is an old-fashioned, old-rose pink, a “colonial” pastel that would have been oh-so stylish in 1930s cottage gardens. Try it paired with white Japanese anemones and purple New England asters – lovely! 1-2” 3-4’, from Oregon. Last offered in spring 2008. Available elsewhere.
BLUE DANUBE, 1948
It’s not really blue, of course, but this intriguing dahlia is bluer than virtually any other. It’s a distinct, pearly, not-quite-lilac shade that has an almost unearthly glow about it in the soft light of early evening — perfect for enjoying as you relax at the end of a long hard day. Aka ‘Bonny Blue’, re-introduced from the UK National Collection, 3-4”, 4-5’, grown for us in Oregon. This was one of our “last chance” dahlias in spring 2013, and we’re not planning to offer it again.
DIXIE’S WINEDOT, 1942
Much more than just a pretty face, this infinitely varied dahlia is helping researchers at the Stanford University Dahlia Project explore the mysteries of genetics. But, trust us, you don’t have to be a scientist to enjoy its big, primrose to cream flowers delicately sprinkled with wine. They’re gorgeous! By the Dixie Dahlia Gardens of Clio, Michigan, informal dec, 6-10”, 5-6’, from New Hampshire. Last offered in spring 2014. We’re building up stock and will offer it again. For an alert, sign up for our email newsletter.
G.F. HEMERICK, 1936
Just the right size to tuck into containers, small gardens, or the front of perennials, this happy little dwarf offers non-stop flowers of tawny orange. Next to purple flowers or bronze foliage, it’s magic. 2-3” 16-18 inches tall, from Oregon. Last offered in spring 2008. We may offer it again periodically.
GIRAFFE, 1940
‘Giraffe’ is not just weird, it’s wonderful. Its unruly, golden petals twist and fold forward to reveal back sides barred with bronze. Some see giraffes, others orchids or ocelots, but everyone agrees it’s not like any other dahlia – and very cool. Cut a few for a vase so you can enjoy its rich complexity up close. 4” 3-4’, from Oregon. Last offered in spring 2009. Though ‘Giraffe’ is a very interesting flower, it’s not a strong grower and we don’t plan to offer it again.
HOCKLEY MAROON, 1935
The dark, velvety petals of this sophisticated little dahlia curl back to form an almost perfect globe, like a shimmering drop of sherry. Long-lasting in both the garden and bouquets, it’s stunning with our ‘Rubrum’ lilies, blue salvia, and lime-green Nicotiana langsdorfii — or all alone in a simple bud vase. 3-4”, 4’, from Oregon. This was one of our “last chance” dahlias in spring 2013, and we’re not planning to offer it again.
JANE COWL, 1928
More people asked us to find ‘Jane Cowl’ than any other lost dahlia — and when we finally tracked it down, we understood why. It’s a big, gorgeous dahlia, with undulating petals of buff, bronze, and gold, like the tresses of a goddess — or actress Jane Cowl (1883-1950), who was once “the most beautiful woman on the American stage.” 6-8”, 5-6’, from New Hampshire. Last offered in spring 2014. We’re building up stock and will offer it again. For an alert, sign up for our email newsletter.
KISMET, 1932
Like sand dunes aglow with the rosy light of dawn, the ethereal color of this stunning dahlia is NOT pink (no matter what our photo suggests), NOT bronze (as the ADS classifies it), but wonderfully, shimmeringly, mysteriously both. It blooms like crazy, too, and its form is perfection. No wonder our staff loves it! 6-8” 4-5’, from Oregon. Last offered in spring 2007. We hope to offer it again someday. For an alert, sign up for our email newsletter.
LOIS WALCHER, 1958
From the British National Collection of Dahlias, this big, poofy, flower has purple petals tipped with white, giving it a festive, almost spotted look. And who was ‘Lois Walcher’? Mr. Walcher bred the flower, so: wife? daughter? mother? sister? Definitely someone special! 5’, from Oregon. Last offered in spring 2004. We may offer it again someday.
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