How to Grow Dahlia Flowers

Dahlia Flower Perennial

Growing Perennial Dahlia Flower in Your Home Garden

Originally from Mexico, Perennial Dahlia flowers are a big family of big-bloomed flowering plants. It’s a very big family with hundreds of varieties. Why, there’s a Dahlia for everyone!  And, flower heads range from small pompons to several inches in diameter. So, what are you waiting for!? Use this guide to learn how to grow dahlias. Then, get growing!

These attractive plants produce loads of brilliant blooms. Flowers include single bloom, double bloom, and more. And, if color is what you are looking for, growing Dahlias are your answer.  

Dahlia flowers can produce very, very big blooms. Some varieties are known as “Dinner Plate Dahlias”. Can you guess why!?

Now for the best news… Dahlias are easy to grow. So make sure to include some in your flower beds. After they bloom and adorn your yard, they will keep your vases. Blooms from late summer to fall.

Try Dahlias in pots or containers on your patio or deck.

Dahlias look good in the garden, and as cut flowers.

Flowers Bloom: From Summer through to the first Fall Frost.

Flower Colors: Includes rainbows of orange, salmon, bronze, apricot, yellow, crimson, scarlet, and lavender. Sorry, there are no blues.

Plant Height: 1 to 5 feet.

Dahlia Plant Propagation

Dahlia can be grown from seed. Start Dahlia seeds indoors six to eight weeks before the last frost in your area. We recommend planting them in separate pots, allowing ample room for root growth. This will make transplanting easier.

Established Dahlia plants are frequently propagated by the separation of their tubular roots. This can be very useful as you are assured of the color of the new plants. Dig a hole 6-10 inches deep. Mix in plenty of manure and compost. Bury the roots with the crowns 3″ below the surface.

Propagation by cuttings is also possible, but somewhat uncommon.

Days to Germination: 7 – 14 days.

Dahlia Flower Perennial

How to Grow Dahlia Flower Plants

Perennial Dahlia plants are very easy to grow. They prefer full sun. 

The plants are are big feeders. Make sure the soil is rich and fertile. Add plenty of compost and apply mulch. Low nitrogen fertilizer should be applied regularly all season. Keep the soil moist but drained, at all times.

Space smaller varieties 16″ apart. The largest varieties should be spaced 2 feet apart to allow ample room for growth. After the plants have grown about a foot, pinch back the stems to promote a bushier growth.

Dahlia plants will grow quickly and will bloom in mid-late summer. Stem tips will develop multiple buds, usually three. To grow bigger blooms disbud the two side buds, leaving the middle, terminal bud.

For use as cut flowers, sear the cut end with a match or candle.

Dahlias will succumb to a hard frost. Dig up the tubers, and place them in a bed of dry sand. Store them in your cellar over the winter and replant them in the spring. You can mark the tubers with the flower color if desired.

Ideal Soil pH: 6.0 – 7.5.

Also, see:

Plant Problems – Identify the causes and find the cures.

Insects and Plant Disease

Lots of insects love Dahlias. Slugs and sucking insects, most notably red spiders and mites, can be a real problem. Make sure to put down slug pellets or other slug protection on a routine basis. Use insecticides or insecticidal soaps.

Disease problems can also occur. If you spot it, treat it early with a fungicide.

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