How to grow dahlias
We’re really pleased to now have Dahlia tubers in stock ready for you to plant today! With this in mind (and thanks to a reader question) today we bring you our guide to growing dahlias – one of the most beautiful and varied flowers and the perfect late summer and early autumn flower.
When to plant Dahlias
Dahlias come as seed or as tubers ready to plant. We recommend tubers for best results! If you are planting from seed then Dahlias can be planted any time between February and April. If you decide to plant from tubers then you can plant from the end of this month (March) until May. You need to make sure that the frosts have left us first to prevent the tubers becoming frost damaged (so definitely not yet given the weather we’ve been having!).
How to Plant Dahlias
Dahlias are hungry plants that need soil that is rich and fertile – and an area that provides plenty of sun whilst being well drained. The most common problems growing Dahlias are all from inadequate conditions. Ideally make sure your soil is well fertilised with some rich mulch or manure before planting.
If you’re growing from tubers then you’ll want to make sure that each tuber is planted 3.5-6inches deep with the tubers in a flowering position. Space between dahlias is really determined by the type of dahlia tubers being planted – larger varieties should be spaced 23-25 inches apart, medium sized varieties can be planted 16-19 inches apart and small varieties 11-13 inches apart.
Caring for Dahlias
To get the best dahlias you will want to regularly feed them with liquid fertiliser to encourage strong growth. When dahlias start to get taller they can be gently staked to support them and prevent drooping.
You can leave your dahlias to grow naturally but ideally you want to prune them regularly to encourage the plant to bush out. This can be done by pinching out the tips of the plant once it grows to a height you are happy with. To encourage strong growth make sure you deadhead your dahlias when the flowers begin to fade and wilt.
Dahlias can be affected by a variety of common pests and diseases but are relatively resilient. If you spot bacterial wilt where the plant droops and there is wet rot near the soil you will need to remove the plants, destroy them and plant something else in the area. Other forms of mould and bacteria can usually be treated with fungicide and removing affected areas.
Pop in and see our selection of dahlia tubers and we can happily help you choose beautiful plants and give further advice and guidance on growing.