Edmonds’ official flower? History says it’s the dahlia

dahliaOn a slow night at home, I grabbed my worn copy of “Edmonds, The Gem of Puget Sound” by Ray Cloud. I picked a page with a turned-down corner, and noted I had written the word ‘Dahlias’ and started to read. Boy, I missed this before but, in 1925, our good citizens voted to select a city flower, and the result was a tie between the rose and the dahlia. The long-standing Floretum Club stepped in and recommended the dahlia, and the Council concurred. I checked this story with several club members, and it’s true and some of the history resides in a box at the Edmonds Museum.

That might be the end of the story, except a thought came to mind. Being a Portland native, I’m aware of the big deal made of the rose and the annual Rose Festival activities. In 2000, the festival hosted 2 million visitors and 80 events. The total economic activity that year was $78.1 million. Neighboring counties also benefited from Rose Festival spending. I assume that the Skagit Valley, Sequim and other places also find an economic benefit from their local foliage. All of which raises a question as to whether our City’s dahlias might create some financial benefit for Edmonds. Just asking…

— By Jim Underhill

3 Replies to “Edmonds’ official flower? History says it’s the dahlia”

  1. My neighbors corner garden of very well-tended dahlias was an attractive feature when I was shopping houses. Since moving in a year ago, some have been kindly shared and ended up in my garden. They still have vibrant flowers in October and have looked stunningly beautiful for a few months. Excellent choice Edmonds!


  2. This is an excellent idea, thanks Jim for bringing attention to our city flower. I have also raised dahlias in the past, they are easy care and make such wonderful arrangements. Let’s not let this idea die as it does have merit.


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