in preparation for an intimate dinner party with friends, i found the most wonderful spot in costa mesa, ca full of an abundance of dahlias. they are such a lovely flower and hard to come by in phoenix. we had a great time picking our own and getting some sage advice from the owner on care taking. she mentioned that once cut they do not absorb much water, so you can slightly cauterize with a flame, place in a bit of water, and then mist the petals with a spray bottle. happy to learn some new tips and we will be enjoying our beautiful flowers all week!