Northwest Dahlia Legacy Project

Welcome to the Northwest Dahlia Legacy Project, an effort of the Federation of Northwest Dahlia Growers.

The Northwest Dahlia Legacy Project is committed to gathering and protecting the invaluable knowledge of our NW Dahlia Leaders and ensuring its accessibility to future generations.

Our beautiful Northwest region historically has a remarkable abundance of extraordinary, visionary, cutting edge and noteworthy dahlia growers. We are building an official depository of their history, signature methods and list of their cultivars. We are systematically documenting and collecting this wealth of information into one site that all Federation members can easily access for reference and to learn from. We are establishing an apprenticeship like approach to obtaining best practices from those we still can, while we can!

This project is intended to document the people, societies, events, and activities that have contributed to making the Federation of Northwest Dahlia Growers what it is today. Please be sure to come back often as we allow additional content to bloom.


The Federation of Northwest Dahlia Growers

Learn more about the Affiliated Societies of the Federation of Northwest Dahlia Growers.

Two clubs, Yakima Dahlia Society and Skagit Valley Dahlia Society, were previously active but are no longer in operation.

In addition to our Affiliated Societies, the Federation welcomes Portland Dahlia Society, Victoria Dahlia Society, and Evergreen State Dahlia Association as Associate members.

Recently Added Legacy Profiles

Click here to read all profiles

Art & Julie Chmura

Julie & Art Chmura have graciously welcomed and encouraged dahlia enthusiasts since they became involved with both the Puget Sound Dahlia Association and the Federation of Northwest Flower Growers over 30 years ago. This dynamic duo has actively been involved in many aspects of both organizations since early 1992, welcoming and encouraging to any experience level of dahlia growers — especially those who have just discovered dahlias.

Bill & Ida Bonneywell

Bill Bonneywell lives on through his many Snoho originations which are still being grown throughout the dahlia world. As is so often the case in the dahlia world, Bill “came for the dahlias but he stayed for the people.” Bill became an enthusiastic student of hybridization and was mentored and supported by some of the best. Two of his greatest influences were outstanding hybridizers, Gordie Leroux of Kenora dahlias, as well as Dick Matthies, breeder of Fidalgo dahlias.

John Ruud

John Ruud is a long-time member and leader in the North Central Washington Dahlia Society, and was instrumental to the club's efforts to establish a public demonstration garden in Wenatchee. John has served NCWDS in a variety of leadership positions, including more than one term as president! He sees himself as a "country boy" and loves to putter around and work with his hands.

Phil Traff

Phil Traff was the most important and influential visionary in Northwest dahlia history. His primary legacy was his constant quest for innovation. Many of his ideas have permanently changed the face of Northwest organizations, shows, and judging. Learn more about his influence on what we now know of today as the Federation of Northwest Dahlia Growers.

For more information about the Dahlia Legacy Project…

This project is certainly a work in progress, as we continue to cultivate content and add new profiles to the site. If you are interested in writing a profile for the site, please contact your club's Dahlia Legacy Project representative. In addition, you are encouraged to consider contributing content to the Dahlia Legacy Project when completing your judging projects. Talk to your judging instructor for more information.

Thank you to the Federation of Northwest Dahlia Growers for its financial and leadership support of this project.

Coming Soon
Puget Sound Dahlia Association will soon make its historical archive of Dahlias of Today available on its website for researchers working on Dahlia Legacy Project profiles. Thank you to PSDA for their generous support!

Unless otherwise stated, the content of this page is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License