All about the dahlia, the flower that illuminates the summer gardens
The dahlia is a tuber carrying big flowers all summer long. Easy to grow it embellishes all types of garden.
The dahlia is a perennial very easy to grow in the garden. He enjoys rich land and without too much moisture and blooms from May until frost. This hot climate tuber enjoys sunny exposures and transforms gardens into colorful carpets all summer long. Our practical tips will help beginners and confirmed gardeners to cultivate dahlia with ease in their garden and on their terrace.
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Plantation of dahlia
The dahlia enjoys rich, well-drained and not too humid soils. This tuber enjoys full sun exposure and suffers especially in heavy and cold lands. Prepare the ground well by amending rich compost and lightening it if necessary with garden potting soil. Plan for planting distances of about 30 cm. Prepare the tubers by placing them in a crate with peat and water lightly. The tubers are planted after the end of the frosts when vegetation starts to appear. Dig holes about 15 cm and install the tubers without tamping the soil and without depressing the departures of vegetation. Water lightly and straw around the plantations to avoid weed encroachment.
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The dahlia in pot
The dahlia and especially the mini varieties can be grown in planters or in large pots. Proceed as for outdoor planting. Prefer compact port varieties so they do not overflow containers. Think of the fertilizer for flowering plants once a week in the summer and plan frequent waterings.
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Size and maintenance of the dahlia
Dahlias do not carve but the large varieties can be staked to avoid pouring. Remove the faded flowers as you go, to encourage the appearance of new flowers. Think mulching around the plants for avoid soil drought. Attention, the dahlias do not support temperatures lower than - 5 °. In colder regions, it is better remove the tubers in autumn to make them winter dry and frost free. The tubers can be cut in two or three and replanted separately the following year.
Watering and dahlia fertilizer
The dahlia is water hungry and requires regular waterings, without limestone if possible to bloom well. He enjoys warmth but needs fresh, drained soil. Be careful with moisture accumulations which can promote the appearance of rot. The soil must be worked before planting the tubers. Only the addition of liquid fertilizer can be useful for potted dahlias.
Diseases and parasites that affect the dahlia
The dahlia can be reached by different pests and diseases. Beware of slugs that devour young leaves, aphids and red spiders that are present in spring and summer. Think of Ferramol and sprays of nettle manure and black soap. The dahlia can also suffer from powdery mildew in stagnant humidity in the soil favoring the appearance of this disease.
To know about the dahlia
The dahlia is a native tuber of Central America who originally; was edible. It was when it was reported in Europe that its aesthetic qualities were enhanced and developed.
The varieties of dahlia to choose
There are dahlias of any size and any color, from the purest white to the dark red, drawing on the black. The shape of the flowers also varies enormously between varieties with flowers of peonies, chrysanthemums, camellia, dahlia pompon or cactusstar-shaped or anemone-flowered dahlias. Start with small dahlias that do not require staking.
Gardener's tip on the gardener
Some cultivate dahlias for the size of their flowers. Some varieties carry flowers with impressive diameter. If you want to get beautiful flowers, cut the secondary branches and the first appearances of buttons. The dahlias will bloom a little later with bigger flowers.