By Jill Brooke
Are you dreaming of spring flowers and what to plant such as a Franz Kafka dahlia, named after the great 20th-century writer?
While the story of this popular flower is a nod to a great writer, perhaps you don’t know this story about this writer, shared by Kim Turner, that may make your day.
At 40, Franz Kafka (1883-1924), who never married and had no children, walked through the park in Berlin when he met a girl who was crying because she had lost her favorite doll. She and Kafka searched for the doll unsuccessfully. Kafka told her to meet him there the next day and they would come back to look for her.
The next day, when they had not yet found the doll, Kafka gave the girl a letter “written” by the doll saying “please don’t cry. I took a trip to see the world. I will write to you about my adventures.” Thus began a story that continued until the end of Kafka’s life.
During their meetings, Kafka read the letters of the doll carefully written with adventures and conversations that the girl found adorable. Finally, Kafka brought back the doll (he bought one) that had returned to Berlin.
“It doesn’t look like my doll at all,” said the girl.
Kafka handed her another letter in which the doll wrote: “my travels have changed me.” The little girl hugged the new doll and brought the doll home.
Many years later, after Kafka had died, the now-adult girl found a letter inside the doll.
“Everything you love will probably be lost, but in the end, love will return in another way.”
Embrace the change. It’s inevitable for growth. Together we can shift pain into wonder and love, but it is up to us to consciously and intentionally create that connection.
That’s definitely a seed to plant as well as a flower.
So let’s chat now about the dahlia named after the “Metamorphosis” author. First, it’s beautiful and vibrant. The perfectly formed Pompon dahlia, with tightly cupped petals, has magnificent deep magenta-pink flowers that contrast so perfectly. with dark green foliage. The globular dahlias bloom from midsummer to late-autumn and also make an excellent cut flower.
The Franz Kafka dahlia is also a perfect companion for the larger stretched-out petaled dahlias.
1) Franz Kafka dahlia grows best in full sun
2) Likes well-drained fertile soil.
3) Don’t forget to lift the tubers after the first frost and store them in a cool place until March for potting, if you have a greenhouse. Or wait until planting in May. Tubers, as we know, have to be taken out of the ground if you want the flowers for the next season. But some flowers are worth the effort.
Nice to know that the author and the flower are both award-winners.