📅 When to plant your Dahlia tubers:
We know you can’t wait to plant your dahlias, but please keep in mind that Dahlias are absolutely NOT hardy. The ideal time to plant your Dahlia tubers is after the last frost in your area when the soil temperature is at least 60°F (15°C). This typically occurs between late April and mid-May, depending on your location. Planting at the right time will give your Dahlias the best chance to thrive.
Dahlias thrive in warm climates and are hardy in USDA hardiness zone 8-10. If you live within these zones, you can go ahead and plant your dahlias as soon as you receive your dahlias.
📦 Storing your Dahlia tubers until planting:
What to do with your dahlia tubers in the meantime when there are still freezing nights, the ground is frozen and you can’t plant your dahlia tubers?
- Start them off in a one-gallon pot, and cover them with dry compost. Or you can wrap them in a newspaper.
- Keep the tubers in a cool, dry, and dark place, such as a garage or basement.
- Avoid exposing them to direct sunlight, extreme temperatures, or moisture, as this can cause premature sprouting or rotting.
🌿 Preparing your garden for planting:
When it is almost time to plant your dahlia tubers, you can start preparing your garden for planting. Choose a well-draining and sunny location that receives at least 6-8 hours of direct sunlight per day. Dahlias prefer slightly acidic to neutral soil with a pH between 6.0 and 7.0. You can improve the soil structure by adding organic matter such as compost or well-rotted manure.
🌱 How to plant your Dahlia tubers:
When the threat of frost has passed and the soil temperature is at least 60°F (15°C), it is FINALLY time to plant your dahlia tubers. How?
- Dig a hole about 6-8 inches (15-20 cm) deep and wide enough to accommodate the tuber.
- Create a small mound at the bottom of the hole, and place the tuber on top with the eye (the point where the stem will grow) facing up.
- Cover the tuber with 2-3 inches (5-7,5 cm) of soil, and water the area thoroughly.
- Space each tuber about 18-24 inches (45-60 cm) apart to give them enough room to grow.
- If your dahlia tubers feel dry or look dormant, you could soak them for 1-2 hours in lukewarm water.
💧 Watering & care:
After planting, make sure to water the tubers thoroughly. During the blooming season, you should water them 1-2 times a week, depending on the amount of sun and type of soil. Not sure when and how much to water them? A good thumb rule is to water the plant deeply when the top 2 inches of soil are dry (just feel this with your finger).
Water your Dahlias regularly, aiming for consistently moist but not waterlogged soil. Once the plants are established, you can reduce the watering frequency. Keep an eye out for pests and diseases, and apply appropriate treatments as needed.
🌸 How to keep your Dahlias blooming?
- Fertilize with a balanced fertilizer every 2-4 weeks.
- Deadhead spent blooms to encourage continued flowering.
- Stake your Dahlias to support the stem.
- After blooming time, it is important to dig up the Dahlia tubers and store them in a cool, dark spot that is free of moisture and replant them again in spring. This is especially important for regions with temperatures that dip below freezing.