Monday, June 6, 2016

How to Plant Dahlia Tubers


Howdy friends! Happy June! I've missed you! How has it been nearly a month since my last post? I can assure you it's not for lack of good writing material. I've been getting my gardens and containers prepped for planting while waiting for the weather to warm up enough to plant my dahlia tubers and seeds. We've had a cool, wet spring so I've held off on planting anything outside until last week. I can't tell you how excited I am to have them in the ground finally!

 At first sight a dahlia tuber can be a little intimidating to the new grower.  It can be difficult to distinguish which end is up, or down. Honestly, how can anything this ugly make something so beautiful?

The tuber above is one that I dug up and over wintered from last season. It already had a new eye start on it before I stored it. You can see where the stem was cut off at the very top of the photo. When you plant dahlia tubers, plant them with the stem facing upwards and the tubers hanging below facing downwards in a six inch deep hole. Cover them and water in well but be careful not to soak them. You don't want to risk rotting the tubers before they get going!

Give your dahlias nutrient rich soil with plenty of organic matter mixed in and a minimum of 6 hours of sunlight per day.

I over wintered last seasons tubers in a plastic bin filled with pine shavings. This is how they looked when I uncovered them in April to check for mold or any rotted soft material on the tubers. Always check your tubers during storage to make sure they're not getting too moist. I also trimmed off all the dried scraggly roots from the tubers and then I placed them in fresh shavings until planting time.

Dahlias bloom on tall plants that can reach over 5" tall. They will fall to the ground if not supported correctly.  I like to wait until they get several inches above ground before I stake them. That way I can be sure not to disturb or damage the tubers. Wooden stakes or bamboo garden stakes work well in a small operation where only one or two people tend the flowers. I tie them up with regular old garden twine. Have I mentioned how much I love twine? I L.O.V.E. TWINE!

Dahlias growing tall and proud! 

If you haven't tried dahlias in your garden or backyard flower farm yet I hope you'll give them a try this season. I love using them in my wedding work and I especially enjoy them on my dining room table, or anywhere for that matter!

I'm excited to see how the new Bridal Mix and Antique Anemone varieties I ordered from Eden Brothers do this year!  

Put down some roots and bloom!

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