How to Plant Dahlias

Dahlia is a flowering shrub with annual stems and a perennial tuberous root. Native to Mexico and California. Root tubers provide nutrients for overwintering buds. The flower in nature has 10-12 varieties, and as a result of the work of breeders there are many forms and colors of dahlias, the palette is expanding. Nonemarching, pom-pom, cactus and other forms of flowers crown a bush from 50 cm to 2 meters high. In the middle belt and more northern regions, dahlias are planted in seedlings when the threat of frost is over.

How to plant dahlias

Requirements for the planting location and soil quality

Loose, fertile, humus-rich soil, a clearing open to the sun and protection from the north wind – all you need for a lush flowering bush from the second half of summer to the first frosts. A temperature of around 0 degrees will kill both young and mature plants.

The bed should be in the sun, but in the sultry hours the lace shade does not hurt. Close standing groundwater will damage the fleshy root tubers.

The nest for planting dahlias is prepared in 2 steps – in autumn, the soil is deeply plowed and organic material is added. In the spring, prepare a hole 40 cm deep, fill the bottom with drainage and some backfill. It is prepared from the soil taken from the bed, add a shovel of compost, 1, 1.5 tbsp. l. A handful of quicklime and a little bit of mineral fertilizer. The soil is moistened with Phytosporin-M, or another biofungicide. Everything is thoroughly mixed.

Put the pits at least 60 cm apart and space between the rows 80-100 cm. A massive support stake is driven into each hole. As the plant matures, it becomes sprawling. Overgrowth and insufficient ventilation will lead to the development of phytophthora.

Growing dahlias from tubers

In warm climates, where the ground does not freeze over, spring is early, dahlia is a favorite and easy-care decoration of front gardens in rural homesteads. Root grows in one spot for up to 5 years without freezing in winter. It is true that the stolons come from young tubers of the last two years, but the old roots have a good supply of nutrition. When dahlias sprout in the south – the only concern is to cover them from return frosts.

In the middle belt and areas with a continental climate and short summers, you can admire the lush blooming of dahlias by growing them in the warmth. Planting material – the root tubers are dug out and stored or purchased in a specialized store.

Spring revision and preparation of tubers, signs of a healthy tuber

A root dug out without damage is a stem with elongated and globular “potatoes” attached to it. In the fall, the dense ball should be cleaned of soil, dried and placed in storage.

If rot has appeared in the planting material, clean the tubers to a clean cut, sprinkle the wounds with activated charcoal. Keep it warm in moist substrate until the buds sprout, about a week.

Pull apart the root into individual plants with a sharp knife. Each fragment consists of 1-2 tubers with part of the mid-stem, with a sprout or two. Dry out the slices and sprinkle with crushed charcoal or ash.

The time for disassembling the root depends on how to continue sprouting. If a seedling is grown, divisions are prepared at the beginning of March and April. For planting in the open ground immediately, seedlings – all operations are shifted to a month, closer to warmth. If you plan to grow seedlings from cuttings – get the tubers in February.

Signs of a healthy tuber

Buying dahlia tubers in a bag in the store, you need to pay attention to its condition and preservation. Do not take a bag where small tubers have broken off and are lying separately – they are not connected to the stem, useless. Do not buy bumps with tubers of small size – there will be many leaves, few flowers.

  1. The tubers should have a continuation in the form of a stem fragment.

  2. The color is light brown, the skin is elastic, without wrinkles, indicating drying.

  3. There are tubercles of growth points or sprouts.

On the package is written, the species, variety and growth of the future dahlia. There are recommendations for care, they should not be neglected.

According to the listed features assess the tuber prepared by yourself or bought at the market dump. Buy planting material at the same time as specified for tuber disassembly. Pre-bought live goods are difficult to preserve without special conditions.

Growing tubers

Prepared dividers are soaked for 30 minutes in Fitosporin-M or manganese, washed and dried. The root has enough of its own nutrition, so sprouting is carried out in a moist substrate:

  1. Old sawdust, without turpentine odor;

  2. Coconut shavings;

  3. vermiculite;

  4. washed river sand.

In a box on the bottom pour a layer of material, spread the seedlings so that the eyes of seedlings look up. Set light partitions between the dividers, so that the roots do not get mixed up. Fill with damp substrate, taking care not to cover the buds. Grow in room temperature. As soon as possible, harden on the balcony, in the greenhouse in the fresh air. Thanks to this, dahlia seedlings do not stretch out and become thick and stocky. Plant them in prepared wells as soon as the threat of frost has passed, or under cover.

Growing seedlings from tubers

In the conditions of Eastern Siberia and Transbaikalia, it is practiced to grow a full bush as a seedling to accelerate flowering in the conditions of a short summer. This method is labor-intensive, but the plant will thank you by blooming in early July.

The cuttings are placed in fertile soil in a conical bucket of 3-5 liters. In April, the division is planted, leaving a height of about 10 cm to the borders. As the stem grows, the soil will be sprinkled. The bush grows very powerful, it is important to arrange a support, as the branches are fragile.

At the end of May, the bushes are moved to the greenhouse, closer to the street and the ground, harden. Complete bush, with the beginnings of the first buds rooted in the prepared hole in the first decade of June. The bush is still in the seedling, sprouting, speeding up flowering.

Important! The earth in the container a few hours before planting should be well watered. Planted in pairs, taking the well-twisted roots out of the upside-down bucket and turning the new plant in the right position. Take out, pulling by the stems should not be done, they are fragile, will break off.

Getting dahlia seedlings by cuttings

How to plant dahlias

Anyone who has dismantled a dahlia tuber into dividers knows how difficult it is to keep the buds growing from deep inside, how much is culled. The method when the rootstock is allowed to reach its full potential and give a healthy seedling is called cuttings.

The cutting is the stem that has grown on the mother plant and has taken root around the heel. It has all the varietal traits of uterus, but is devoid of tuber-borne diseases. A mature plant from a cuttings blooms abundantly and forms tubers in the ground.

Preparing the mother root for germination

Remove the seedling in February, carry out revision, clean, disinfect, disinfect for 15 minutes in a solution of permanganate. Treat with any growth stimulant. Place the thickened part completely in the substrate, leaving the neck open.

Keep the container in the light, in a cool place, do not allow it to dry out. When the cuttings will rise to 8-10 cm, they are carefully removed, along with the “heel” and rooted in the prepared nutritious soil in a separate glass.

Cultivation of cuttings

As the lower tier of cuttings grows up, the nest can be disassembled and additional planting material can be extracted, which will develop to be ready for planting a week later.

Seedling care is simple. It is important that the soil is moist. Transplant the cuttings should be carefully, by transplanting them into a container of larger volume. A bright, cool location will ensure the growth of a stocky bush. At the first opportunity, you need to start hardening the plant.

Cultivating Dahlias from Seeds

Every dahlia variety can produce mature seeds. The seed method of propagation is simple, and the flowers are grown as annuals. In fact, under favorable conditions, a root is formed under the ground in the form of several tubers, ready for reproduction.

However, the seeds of annual dahlias, “Friendly Guys,” are obtained from low- and medium-growing short-ripening varieties. They are ready to flower in 2 months after sprouting, but are also afraid of any frosts. Therefore, in the Midlands and cold regions it is practiced to grow seed varieties through seedlings, in the south they sow in wells like other annuals.

The low and fast-blooming dahlias “Friendly Guys” will adorn any garden. They bloom earlier than their tall, large congeners. They do not need to be gartered or sprouted. Their flowers are smaller but their blossoms are so abundant you can’t even see the shrub.

Dahlia sprouts from seed

For seedlings take universal soil substrate, standard peat or plastic cups with drainage. The seedlings grow quickly, sowing in mid-April for planting in early June. The seeds are left on the surface of the substrate, slightly moistened, slightly sprinkled, covered with glass or film, kept in the heat for about a week.

Seedlings are sprayed, watering can wash away the soil. Choose the brightest place, even if not warm. Dahlias grow quickly. It is important not to overwater and harden the plants. Plant together with a peat pot. For 2 weeks, until the new seedlings take root, moisten, not allowing the soil to dry out.

Direct sowing to the bed

When the soil has warmed up to 10 degrees and the threat of frost has passed, sow the seeds of annual dahlias. The distance between the holes should be according to the needs of the chosen variety – 20-60 cm. In each hole place 3 seeds, sprinkle a little and water with warm water. The bed is covered with foil, so that the soil does not dry out. When the plants are stronger, they can either be thinned or spaced out. Dahlias bloom in August.


No type of annual dahlia, they are perennials and easy to care for. Selection work on the development of new, unusual forms and colors allows to obtain amazingly beautiful flowers, devoid of fragrance.

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