Wondering when to plant dahlias? We’ve got you covered! Dahlias are one of the most popular flowers to grow in a garden. With their vibrant colors and diverse shapes, they can add a touch of beauty to any outdoor space. However, timing is crucial when it comes to planting dahlias. If you want to enjoy a spectacular display of blooms during the summer and fall, you need to know exactly when to plant them. Let’s discuss the best time to plant dahlias and how to get them started in your garden.
When to Plant Dahlias
The best time to plant dahlias is in the spring after the danger of frost has passed. In most areas, this is usually between late April and early May. Dahlias need warm soil to grow, so you should wait until the soil temperature is at least 60°F (15°C) before planting them. If you want to know what the current soil temperature is where you live, you can use this tool. If you live in a colder climate, you can start dahlias indoors about six weeks before the last expected frost date in your area.
Preparing the Soil
Before planting your dahlias, it’s important to prepare the soil properly. Dahlias prefer well-draining soil that is rich in organic matter, but not too rich. If you have very poor soil, you can improve the quality by adding compost or well-rotted manure to the planting area. You should also make sure the soil pH is between 6.0 and 7.5, which is the optimal range for dahlias.
When planting dahlias, you should first dig a hole that is twice the width of the tuber and about six inches deep. Place the tuber in the hole with the eye, or growing point, facing up. Cover the tuber with soil and water thoroughly. Make sure to space the tubers at least 18 inches apart to allow for proper growth and air circulation.
Caring for Dahlias
Once your dahlias are planted, water them infrequently, with more watering during dry periods. You should also fertilize them every four to six weeks with a balanced fertilizer that is high in phosphorus. This will encourage strong root growth and blooming. It’s also important to stake tall dahlias to prevent them from falling over in the wind.
Unless you live in zones 9-11, you’ll need to keep your dahlias indoors during the winter. In the fall, after the first frost has killed the foliage, dig up your tubers and store them in a cool, dry place for the winter. Dahlias are not frost-tolerant, so they will not survive the winter outdoors in most climates.
Dahlias are a beautiful addition to any garden, but they require proper timing and care to thrive. With the right care, you can enjoy a stunning display of dahlias throughout the summer and fall.
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By Gibbs Gardens
Photographs courtesy of Gibbs Gardens
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