Five Tips for Dazzling Dahlias These showy blooms can hold their own in our blistering heat
For broad-shouldered, showy blooms that can take the summer heat, you can’t beat dahlias. Despite a pop culture reputation for being associated with mystery, there’s no secret to growing these hardy plants. Dahlias perform beautifully in the garden or in containers and yield magnificent cut flowers. For these reasons alone, dahlias should be on your garden to-do list this summer.
What variety to plant depends on your expectations of these prolific bloomers. Looking for some garden drama? Select larger-blooming dahlias like decorative or dinnerplate, which can grow up to 5 feet tall and sport blooms 12 inches wide! If it’s cut flowers you want, choose smaller-blooming types like mignon, collarette or low growing, with modest blooms of 1 – 4 inches.
Amy Dube, flower bulb expert at Dig.Drop.Done, offers five tips for growing dazzling dahlias this summer.
1. Plant shallow. Dahlias like to be planted close to the surface rather than deep in the ground. Stay mindful of this when planting to achieve optimal results. Two inches of depth is ideal.
2. Water cautiously. Dahlias don’t like to be watered a lot when initially planted. Once their sprouts begin growing, water deeply on a regular basis, two to three times per week.
3. Bring on the heat. Dahlias like it hot — the more sun the better! They need a minimum of eight hours a day.
4. Deadhead. Remove spent blooms on a regular basis. Plants that are deadheaded produce more blooms than those that aren’t. It’s best to cut farther down the stalk versus just cutting off the flower head itself.
5. Stake out. Stake large-blooming dahlias to support their weight. Set the stake next to the dahlia tuber when planted. That way, you won’t damage a growing tuber later in the season.
Dig.Drop.Done is a North American educational campaign to introduce flowering bulbs to a new generation of potential gardeners and demystify the bulb-growing process. For more information, visit DigDropDone.com.