The ideal time to plant Dahlia’s
The ideal time to plant Dahlia’s is April. The Dahlia is an easy plant to grow in the garden, with a little bit of care she will reward you with a plenty of flowers.
When it comes to soil the Dahlia is not demanding, she will feel at home in any sort of reasonable garden soil.
What the Dahlia does love is light, lots of light. The Dahlia originates from Mexico so you can’t give her too much light.
A few hours of shade will not harm her but when she has too much shade the Dahlia will grow taller and her stems will be weaker.
The Dahlia uses a lot of water, please do keep that in mind. A large plant like the Dahlia drinks a lot, especially when she is in full bloom, so make sure the soil will remain moist.
Also, when you plant a Dahlia in a container, choose a pot that holds at least 10 litres, so the soil provides a good buffer of water.
Large flowering Dahlia’s do need some support, when they are in full bloom they might fall over on a rainy and windy day.
Remove the decaying flowers so the plant cannot put energy in developing seeds. As soon as the flower is removed the throw two new stems that each will produce a new flower.
When you receive your Dahlia, she will not look very pretty. The tubers are a little bit dried out and she will look poorly.
One variety looks worse than another, but please do not panic, when a Dahlia is in a moist environment you will see sprouts growing on the top of the tuber around the cut of the old stem. Some Dahlia’s will already show this growth when you receive them.
So do make sure the soil is moist when you plant the Dahlia so she easily can suck some water. The top of the Dahlia, where you see the cut of the last years stem, needs to be just below the surface with the thick roots pointing down as good as possible.
It is quite rare but sometimes there can be a severe night frost after you planted the Dahlia’s. Do cover the Dahlia with some turf or leaves because she is very susceptible for freezing.
If you never planted a Dahlia before I do advise you to give it a shot, she really is one of the most rewarding plant in the garden. I do not know of any other type of bulb or tuber that can throw as many flowers as the Dahlia.
Carlos van der Veek.