At this time of year, most plants are bent on making seeds, not blossoms. Not so the dahlias. Among the blowsy seedheads and fading foliage, their vibrant colors declare that the season isn’t over yet.
My parents retired to Mendocino, on the coast north of San Francisco. There, the cool but mild climate is similar to that of England, and dahlias (indeed, most perennials) thrive. Those my dad grew were as big as dinner plates! I admit to jealousy. Here in Colorado, it’s not so simple; you have to want to grow dahlias. Spectacular flowers in flamboyant hues are your reward.