Dahlia is a tuberous annual flowering plant, can bring lot of color to your garden, as there are lot of different color available.
The origin of Dahlia is in Mexico. It came in India around the year of 1860. At first, farming of Dahlia was rare, due to the problem of keeping the plant alive for next year. From the middle of twentieth century, farming of Dahlia advanced rapidly.
As that time people discovered, by doing late cutting, it is possible to keep the plant alive throughout the year. Now they are one of the major attraction in our annual garden, though they
Planting and care
- There s no need to water the soil until the dahlia plants appear; in fact, over-watering can cause tubers to rot.
- After dahlias are established, provide a deep watering 2 to 3 times a week for at least 30 minutes with a sprinkler (and more in dry, hot climates).
- Like many large-flower hybrid plants, the big dahlias may need extra attention before or after rain, when open blooms tend to fill up with water or take a beating from the wind.
- Bedding dahlias need no staking or dis-budding; simply pinch out the growing point to encourage bushiness, and deadhead as the flowers fade.
- Pinch the centre shoot just above the third set of leaves.
- For the taller dahlias, insert stakes at planting time.
- Moderately pinch, dis-branch, and dis-bud, and deadhead to produce a showy display for 3 months or more.
- Dahlia foliage blackens with the first frost.
- Dahlias are hearty to zone 8 and can be cut back and left in the ground to overwinter; cover with a deep, dry mulch.
- Elsewhere, the tuberous roots should be lifted and stored during the winter.
When & Where to Plant : For best results, dahlias should be planted from mid April through May for most areas. Ground temperature approx. 60 degrees. (exceptions will be hot climates). In general about the same time you would plant your vegetable garden. Dahlias need a sunny location to thrive. An area that receives at least 8 hours of direct sunlight is best. Less sun equals taller plants and less blooms. Exception for hot climates, they will need morning sunlight, afternoon shade.
Sunlight Full sun Watering Most areas have enough rain to fill dahlia water needs until the sprouts appear above the ground. After dahlias are established, a deep watering 2-3 times a week for at least 30 minutes with a sprinkler, more required during warmer dryer weather. Hotter climates will need to water more often as conditions require. Proper watering promotes proper blooming. Soil Ground should be warm, well drained at planting, and in an open sunny location. If you have a heavier soil, add in sand, peat moss or bagged steer manure to lighten and loosen the soil texture for better drainage. Bone meal is ideal at planting time, put a small handful in the hole and work in well before planting tuber.
PH level of your soil should be 6.5-7.0, slightly acidic. Lay the tuber horizontally 4-6 inch deep, about 18 to 24inch apart, and then cover with soil. DO NOT WATER TUBERS AFTER PLANTING!! Please wait to water until after the sprouts have appeared above the ground. The exception will be in hot climates, where they should be watered very lightly.
Temperature If you plant your dahlias in the early spring, the cold soil hinders initial growth — your soil needs to be warmer than 62 degrees Fahrenheit for tuber sprouting. Fertilizer Dahlias benefit from a low-nitrogen liquid fertilizer (similar to what you would use for vegetables) such as a 5-10-10 or 10-20-20. Fertilize after sprouting and then every 3 to 4 weeks from mid-summer until early Autumn. Do NOT over-fertilize, especially with nitrogen, or you risk small/no blooms, weak tubers, or rot.