The Central West Dahlia Society encompasses the Central Tablelands and Central West districts of New South Wales.
Situated west of Sydney’s Blue Mountains, the region covers an area of 200km by 150km, from Wentworth Falls in the east to Dubbo in the west, and from Cowra in the south to Mudgee in the north.
From 1950 to 1970 there were many Central West exhibitors at dahlia shows in Orange and Bathurst. In the large country town of Mudgee, until the last 20 years, there were 10 strong local exhibitors, including Harold Evans, who exhibited for 50 consecutive years at the Mudgee Show, and 49 consecutive years at his hometown show at Gulgong. Interest in the Central West however had declined to such a low level that that it was decided to encourage and support local dahlia growers with the formation of the Central West Dahlia Society in 2003.
In order to encourage participation in local shows, an annual Central West Dahlia Championship consisting of a number of sponsored classes, is rotated around the Central West. The main class is the Central West Dahlia Championship, consisting of three vases distinct types standard units. A new class recently introduced is the Other Types under 160mm Dahlia Challenge, distinct types, standard units exhibitors choice of Collerette, Single, Anemone, Stellar, Orchid, Ball or Pompon types.
To support show societies, Central West Dahlia Society medallions are offered as a component of Central West Dahlia Society membership. Medals are offered to affiliated societies as part of their membership and also provided to interstate and overseas dahlia societies in an exchange program.
The Central West Dahlia Society also promotes dahlias to the general public in a non-competitive environment. In 2011, dahlia displays were held in Bathurst and Mount Wilson, exposing our flowers to a new audience.
On 9 March 2013 a Dahlia display was held at North Orange shopping centre, it was well represented by several members of the Central West Dahlia Society (CWDS) and Orange & District Horticultural Society (ODHS) and growers.
Many cultivars were displayed with Winkie Colonel being one of many favorites among the numerous people who stopped to admire the blooms. The basket displays added bright color and interest, and being close to Easter gave the public a good idea for decoration and gifts. Many enquiries were fielded and much information was given on growing and showing, with many people wanting to know how to obtain tubers. The day ended all too soon with the blooms sold for a nominal price to the public and the funds divided between the ODHS and CWDS. The only difficulty encountered with this display was that tables and cloths had to be brought to the site. The plastic containers once again proved their worth from a safety perspective and ease of use. The effort of cutting, preparing and transporting blooms for the purpose was most rewarding when the public received them so well, and all this without the stress of showing to standards. These social days, with many stories about how big ‘dad or mum’ used to grow them, are good medicine for all concerned and certainly promote dahlias.
2011 / 2012 ORANGE BOTANIC GARDEN DAHLIA DISPLAY
The Central West Dahlia Society has again provided a display at the Orange Botanic Garden for the 2011/2012 flowering season. Thanks entirely to the efforts of Jan Johnstone in planting, staking, tying and pruning, the plot has been producing plenty of flowers and is credit to Jan’s perseverance. Cultivars that Jan is growing this season include Formby Crest (gold semi-decorative), Ivanetti (maroon ball), Formby Alpine (white formal decorative), Mrs J. Robertson (pink & white miniature cactus), Scarborough 2000 (red medium cactus) and Glenbank Honeycomb (gold Pompon).
Orange City Council operates the botanic garden and just recently installed a permanent sign in front of the dahlia patch. The sign acknowledges that the plot has been prepared by the Central West Dahlia Society, has included our logo and Dahlias Australia web site address, and was provided entirely at Council’s expense. Thank-you Orange City Council.
I encourage all members to help out Jan when it comes time in digging the tubers in the next month or two and planting again in October.
President: Bob Smith 02 63651084
Secretary: Kerry Small firstname.lastname@example.org