Wintering dahlia tubers

Discussion in 'Annuals, Biennials, Perennials, Ferns and Bulbs' started by Jim Ife, Nov 22, 2007.

  1. Jim Ife

    Jim Ife Member

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    Qualicum Bay BC Canada
    I just dug up my first dahlia tubers and wonder two things
    1) what is the best way to winter them?
    2) next spring can I break the clump of tuber bulbs into individuals or should a number be planted together?
    Thanks for the help
     
  2. growest

    growest Active Member 10 Years

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    Hi Jim--the "fanatics" that do dahlias for competition would say there are many ways that will work for overwintering, but they seem to agree (around here anyway) that the very best plan is...

    -wash the tubers clean
    -carefully cut individual tubers with a section of the stem, which is where the vitally important bud is, away from the clump
    -dip the tubers you are keeping in a dilute bleach solution...I am guessing this is about 10% household bleach to water, maybe stronger...for 10 minutes
    -dip any cut ends in powdered sulphur
    -store the labeled tubers in vermiculite, in plastic bags or individual ziplocs, above freezing but below 8C or so...don't want them to grow overwinter
    -open the bags if you see moisture condensing, want them just moist enough to avoid shriveling, then close up again

    Dahlia exhibitors all divide the clumps this time of year, and plant only modest sized individual tubers next year. This provides the best quality blooms and avoids most staking. Crowded plants from undivided clumps usually produce smaller blossoms on weaker stems that fall over easily.
     
  3. Jim Ife

    Jim Ife Member

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    Growest
    Thanks for the good info. I will follow your suggestions.
    Jim
     

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