HOW TO LIFT DAHLIAS FOR WINTER STORAGE: COMPLETE GUIDE
When you first start growing dahlias, it is impossible to fall in love with their extraordinary flowers.
These loving perennials are easy to grow and they feature a great display of glorious blooms from early summer until they form a hard snowfall.
And once the winter weather has subsided, it’s time to dig and remove the tubers for winter storage, replanting them in the spring.
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Lifting and storing is an easy process, but there are a few important steps to ensure you have healthy, vibrant tubers for spring planting.
Keep reading here by learning how to store dahlias.
What is the outcome of this guide?
- A dahlia primer
- When the time is right for Dahlias
- Tuber Tutorial of Dahlias
- Dig and lift of Dahlias
- Winter storage of Dahlias
- Divide and Plant Dahlias
HOW TO LIFT DAHLIAS FOR WINTER STORAGE: COMPLETE GUIDE
A DAHLIA PRIMER
The genus Dahlia, native to Mexico and Central America, boasts more than 40 species available to home gardeners.
Members of the Asteraceae family, like aster and sunflowers, these highly ornamental trees or plant feature stunning blooms that last from early summer until freezing temperatures set.
These are beautiful, vibrant cut flowers made with proper care will last a long time in a vase.
As affectionate perennials, they only thrive in USDA hardiness zones 8-11.
Zones 7 and below the zone, they should be treated as annuals. That is, the tubers should be dug in the fall, stored for the winter, and then replanted the following spring for a new set of forgotten and/or amazing summer flowers.
In mildly temperate regions, they can stay on the ground. However, they have a strong aversion to wet feet, even those that grow in warmer regions – especially wet winters – benefit from the annual lifting and splitting.
If these are left in the ground in winter, the tubers multiply and turn into tall shoots. However, it costs more to produce flowers – the bigger the stem, the fewer flowers you see.
A few years ago I put it on the ground for my two winter winters, thinking it would save time. But I dug them in the third year because the number of flowers in the past had rarely increased – and now as dahlias flowers, I pluck, store and divide every year!
Potted plants can overwinter in their pots if they set up in a frost-free location with a thick layer of straw skin to cover the crown.
However, for best flower production, they should also be picked and divided regularly. Annual treatment is preferable but also works every two years.
WHEN THE TIME IS RIGHT FOR DAHLIA
Sunny days in early fall may seem perfect for activities like digging bulbs, but you want to be patient and leave your dahlias a bit longer.
These trees begin to produce tubers in the spring, but they do not reach maturity at the end of the season. The more stable they are, the stronger they will be and the more energy they will store next season.
And it’s an important resource to help them survive the winter savings in the best possible health.
So that the flowers and leaves can come back completely, it is beneficial to leave the tuber in place through light snow. However, these should be excavated before the first hard frost or the first cooling temperature.
DO YOU HAVE TO CUT STEMS, OR NOT?
Dahlias cut about twelve inches or more a week before lifting, which helps the growing eye to rise above the crown.
This makes it easy to share clamps for promotion and storage. The “eyes” will be drawn from next year’s growth.
Since the stems are empty, water can get into the cut edges of the stems and collect in the crown and rot.
This can be a problem during fall rains, so if you choose to cut the stems early, you need to cover your cut edge.
To do this, use a small square of foil or plastic to hold water until the tubers reach the crown.
Otherwise, you can wait until they are ready to lift, but this can make it more difficult to detect growing eyes.
Once you’ve cut them out, be sure to cut out each group of stems and label them with different names once you’ve uploaded them, which makes it very difficult to tell them apart from each other.
Tutorial about how to propagated Dahlia
The lower part of a dahlia tuber.
It is an organ which is starchy and holds the nutrient, food and water which the flower is needed to grow as the flower get its establishment in feeder roots. The new ones will grow from the crown in the same place.
Dahlia comes in different varieties in shapes, which look like yam and others can as long a thin, which is also plump and rounded, or elongated teardrops which are based on the kind.
For the reason of storage and division of dahlia, there are 3 tuber sections to be considered:
- Located at the base of the stem is the flashy crown
- The attached to the tuber to the crown is the thin neck
- Finally, the tuber which is large is attached to the crown by the neck
The only part of the plant that develops and growths eyes is the crown.
But for propagation to be successful, all the parts or the three sections are to remain intact.
Because of the reason above you don’t have to plant, grow or propagate dahlia by using the tubers that are being grown from other tubers, the new plant of dahlia will not be developed without a piece of the crown.
Moreover, should you unintentionally break the growing eyes which are actively off, there is nothing wrong with it or no problem. Why? Because in the same location new ones will come out or up from the crown.
Excavation and extraction
During the first emergence, dahlia tubers may have a brittle lesion. If possible, dig them out in the morning and sit on the ground for a few hours before splitting them up after cleaning – the necks will be easier and shorter to lower.
To remove a shake of the tuber, cut the stalks about 12 inches from the ground if you haven’t done it before. Mark a radius of about 12 inches as a cistern and use a garden shovel or pitch form to dig six to eight inches to loosen the soil.
Once the ground is loose, place the fork under the tuft and lift it carefully. Hold the flower stalks to pick up if necessary.
Gently remove large chunks of soil from the lining and wash with a garden hose to remove any residual dirt.
Cut off any damaged, colourless, soft or rotten pieces with a sharp, clean knife. Turn the tuft over and keep it in a dry place for a few days. This allows water to drain from the stems and helps to remove excess moisture from the tubers.
Expensive drying or healing is important to avoid contamination from bacteria, fungi, mould and winter rot that can damage or destroy your tubers. Once the skin starts to wrinkle a bit, the tubers become dry enough to store.
Winter storage of Dahlia
Tubers are easy to store and can be used in a variety of containers, including cardboard or wooden boxes, paper bags or styrofoam ice chests.
Your dahlia tubers should not be stored in bins, containers or plastic bags as they retain too much moisture which can easily mould and rot.
They will need a slightly damp packaging medium to dry. Coconut coir, peat algae, perlite, sand, caramel or vermiculite conditioner works well for tubers.
For storage, line the bottom of the box with a few layers of newsprint, then add a generous layer of your chosen packing medium – two to three inches deep.
Remove any long nutritious roots and remnants of stems that grow from the tuber with clean, sharp garden scissors.
Before storing the glasses, sprinkle the garden with sulfur-like fungicide powder and be sure to apply it evenly to all cut surfaces.
Bonide sulfur is a plant fungicide
Garden Sulfur at Arabico Organics can be purchased online.
Place the tuber tufts inside the box above the blanket medium, making sure they are not touching. Add more packing material on top until completely covered.
Close the box and store it in a cool, dark place such as a basement, dining room, garage or shed. To confirm the reality, the temperature should be above freezing and below 50 ° F with an ideal temperature range of 40 to 45 degrees Fahrenheit.
Every month, inspect the tubers carefully and discard any that show signs of sagging or decay.
Towards the end of winter or early spring, move your container to a warm (60 to 70 F) dark place.
Each week, sprinkle a tablespoon of water on the stand until you are ready to plant. The added heat and moisture helps the growing eye to develop which makes it easier to share.
DIVIDE AND PLANT DAHLIA
After all the risk of frosting is over, when you are ready to plant, remove the clamps from the storage and gently shake the storage medium.
Inspect the clamp and remove any mold, soft or rotten tubers as well as broken or damaged necks.
A broken throat prevents the flow of energy from the tuber to the crown for the development of healthy eyes.
Cut a piece at the end of each tuber you want to replace. After removing the last one, a quick check will determine if the interior is healthy. Any signs of rot should be discarded.
Cut the remaining pieces of the stem as close to the crown as possible.
If the growing eyes are not visible, you may still be able to successfully share the clamp successfully with the spread. But for new plants to be successful, it is important to have a crown section with a healthy neck and tuber in each section.
Try to place a marble shaped crown piece in each section.
After splitting the crowns, treat all cut surfaces with garden sulfur-like fungicides and then allow the plants to dry 24-26 hours after planting.
And for more information on planting and growing, see our guide about growing dahlias.
THE GLORY OF THE CROWN
With proper storage and division methods, you can quickly put up a great stand of glorious dahlias finished in the late-season garden.
In winter just keep the tubers cool, dark and dry, then in the spring divide and replant again. It’s easy and you’ll love the reliable finish of their ability to color as you begin to fade the rest of the garden.
Do you propagate your own Dalhia? Share your strategies and tips in the comments section below.
WRAP THEM IN PEAT MOSS
Take each tuber in a box with peat moss. It is important that the box is adequately airtight; We protect our exposed side with plastic to ensure minimum moisture loss. Next, lay the one-inch layer of peat sash.
Here I would like to add that I hope we find no material other than the peat sheikh for this step. Once we do, you will know! In the meantime, we use the same peat algae in many seasons, using it only for dahlia storage. Make sure it is very dry, but not dry.
At the top of your one-inch layer of peat moss, place your tubers so that there is at least an inch of space between each. It’s important not to touch each other, so if someone starts to rot, it won’t hurt the rest. Continue adding peat algae for about an inch until you have covered them all (enough to cover the last layer of tubers completely).
THE PERFECT PLACE TO STORE YOUR DAHLIAS
Each house will have a unique place that is best suited for storing dahlias. Here are the main conditions to consider:
– as cold as possible without freezing, the more consistent the better
– as dark as possible
– as dry as possible …
HOW TO OBSERVE DAHLIAS THROUGHOUT THE WINTER
Friends, it is important to check with your dahlias in winter, to make sure that they are not too dry or too wet. Stay tuned to this blog after sharing our privacy this winter! We check every month. At the very least, check them out once.
Preserving your dalias every season is a labour of love, no doubt about it. If you love plants, love the process and have some great tips (welcome to you!) You’ll probably like to save Dahlias. Saving your own tubers is one of the most expensive ways to surround yourself with beauty and what you love year after year.
And for more information on how to take care of your favourite flowers during the winter months, check out these guides about flowers on this website: