Dahlias forum: Please Help With Dahlias Problems

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Name: Karen
Southeast PA (Zone 6b)
Celebrating Gardening: 2015
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kousa
Aug 8, 2016 4:04 PM CST
This year has been really terrible for my dahlias. The JBs attacked them nonstop. For those dahlias flowers that were not attacked by JBs, they developed brown edges that dried to a crisp before the flowers were even fully opened. And now, some buds fail to mature. Can you please help me identify these problems and what corrective actions should I take to get nice blooms?? Thanks in advance!

Browning of petals before flowers are fully opened:

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Buds fail to grow and mature:

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Name: Joshua
Greenville SC (Zone 8a)
Salvias
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woodenman12
Aug 8, 2016 7:44 PM CST
I have had the same problem this year with my dahlias. I would like to know if anyone has any answers
Name: Arlene
Southold, Long Island, NY (Zone 7a)
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Tomato Heads Houseplants Garden Ideas: Level 1 Photo Contest Winner: 2014 Celebrating Gardening: 2015
Plant Identifier
pirl
Aug 8, 2016 7:48 PM CST
I'll be watching as well.
Name: Dan
NE Ohio (Zone 6a)
psudan
Aug 8, 2016 8:46 PM CST
I've broken a half dozen or so buds off my plants in the past couple days that have turned a dark color and appear to be drying up. I have read many causes for this such as too dry, thrips, borers, fungus, etc. The cause I have heard most often is hot, humid weather when the buds are first forming. Of course, that wouldn't really explain why some buds on the same plant are fine. I have at least a few of those every year and wish I knew why. As far as the possibility of bugs, I was told to look for holes on the bottom of the bud. I wish I could be of some help. Do you have a county extension service near you that you could take them to be examined? They may be able to look at them and pinpoint the problem.
Name: Karen
Southeast PA (Zone 6b)
Celebrating Gardening: 2015
Image
kousa
Aug 9, 2016 7:38 AM CST
Thanks, Dan! The aborting of buds maybe due to the weather. Maybe I am not watering them enough during dry spells. I am going to spray tobacco tea on some buds as an experiment to see if I see less of the browning with the ones that I spray.
Name: Dan
NE Ohio (Zone 6a)
psudan
Aug 9, 2016 8:18 AM CST
The weather can really try one's patience. Last year the rain started in late spring and never seemed to end. This year it never started. Most of my problems in the past with buds have been during the hottest, driest parts of the year. I have had a couple open in the last few days and the blooms are the ugliest, misshaped "things" I've ever seen. Hopefully, the weather will eventually cool a bit and things will return to normal. I wish you the best!
Name: Dan
NE Ohio (Zone 6a)
psudan
Aug 9, 2016 9:19 AM CST
I used to think that any bloom was better than none. I've recently changed my mind about that and have broken off these "beauties" before the neighbors have a chance to see them. LOL I hope it's just because of heat stress. Thankfully, most plants are doing very well.

Our county fair is 2 weeks away. I can't wait to enter these! LOL
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Exhibiton Quality?
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This is another one that I've labeled Lady Darlene. I think not!
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Name: Geof
NW Wisconsin (Zone 4b)
Region: Wisconsin Dahlias Garden Ideas: Level 1 Celebrating Gardening: 2015
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mandolls
Aug 9, 2016 9:30 AM CST
I am afraid I don't have anything to add. I haven't ever had this problem. Hopefully it will clear up as the weather changes.
Name: Geof
NW Wisconsin (Zone 4b)
Region: Wisconsin Dahlias Garden Ideas: Level 1 Celebrating Gardening: 2015
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mandolls
Aug 9, 2016 9:33 AM CST
Those are some lovely flowers Dan Blinking

Our little county fair is the 3rd week in July. This was the first year that I actually had plenty of nice dahlias to possibly enter, but I didn't realize that you had to register 2 weeks in advance. Shrug!
Name: Arlene
Southold, Long Island, NY (Zone 7a)
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Tomato Heads Houseplants Garden Ideas: Level 1 Photo Contest Winner: 2014 Celebrating Gardening: 2015
Plant Identifier
pirl
Aug 9, 2016 9:55 AM CST
Hard to believe those "beauties", Dan.

What a shame, Geof! Just when you had entries to show!
Name: Mary Stella
Anchorage, AK (Zone 4b)
Peonies Ponds Dahlias Canning and food preservation Lilies Permaculture
Garden Ideas: Level 2
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Oberon46
Aug 9, 2016 11:56 AM CST
Well, if it is hot humid weather then that would explain why I don't have those problems. We have one gully washer after another after having almost straight sunny hot days for all of spring. I am talking rain coming down straight and hard in buckets. The drains are overflowing and some spots are hard to drive through. Dahlias are fine. And the only varmints we get are slugs. Funny how that happens. Whistling So I do have some raggedy edged blooms and chewed up leaves. I need to get the sluggo out there.

"What a person needs in gardening is a cast iron back with a hinge in it" Charles Dudley Warner (spelling edited by Dinu lol)
Name: Arlene
Southold, Long Island, NY (Zone 7a)
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Tomato Heads Houseplants Garden Ideas: Level 1 Photo Contest Winner: 2014 Celebrating Gardening: 2015
Plant Identifier
pirl
Aug 9, 2016 12:11 PM CST
So sorry to hear it, Mary. Several of us could use that rain!
Name: Karen
Southeast PA (Zone 6b)
Celebrating Gardening: 2015
Image
kousa
Aug 9, 2016 3:37 PM CST
Those are mighty nice mislabels, Dan! They look like fireworks, so pretty.

So sorry that you miss the opportunity to compete the dahlias in the county fair. Our county and township fairs don't start until September. I have never exhibited anything. How does that work? Do you get a prize if you win?

Mary, your region is ideal to grow dahlias. You don't have to deal with bugs and humid weather. I read on the internet that dahlias like it cool since they originated in the mountains of Mexico.
Name: Andrew
South East Michigan (Zone 6a)
Region: Michigan
Oldfatguy
Aug 29, 2016 3:25 AM CST
kousa said:Those are mighty nice mislabels, Dan! They look like fireworks, so pretty.

So sorry that you miss the opportunity to compete the dahlias in the county fair. Our county and township fairs don't start until September. I have never exhibited anything. How does that work? Do you get a prize if you win?

Mary, your region is ideal to grow dahlias. You don't have to deal with bugs and humid weather. I read on the internet that dahlias like it cool since they originated in the mountains of Mexico.


It's been prettt muggy here all year and only one of mine has problems.

I'm no expert and most of you have probably forgotten more than I know but the one I have that is struggling is the one that gets the least amount of sunlight.

It has had two of the brown buds and the one bloom it did have looked like crap. The spot got plenty of sun in June when I put them in but as the days grow shorter it's probably not even getting 5 hours of direct sun.

Also about 5 inches from the base it got some really weird puffy stuff on top of the mulch, when I hit it while watering it seemed to smoke. I forgot what it was called but some kind of fungus and the "smoke" was it releasing spores. Even if it isn't to blame for the weak Dahlia I'm still pointing the finger at it. Big Grin
Name: Mary Stella
Anchorage, AK (Zone 4b)
Peonies Ponds Dahlias Canning and food preservation Lilies Permaculture
Garden Ideas: Level 2
Image
Oberon46
Aug 29, 2016 5:51 AM CST
Well, it sure can't help the plants. Probably will disappear over winter, especially in Michigan. Course, you are south east so you probably don't get the cold that @Weedwacker (another thread) gets or the UP.

Yup, those dahlias love sun. Yours might be so tall because they are reaching for the sun. Dan has a theory about sun and lack thereof and dahlias. Mine pretty much get 20-7 in two beds and probably direct sun from 10 or so (well, maybe 11 this time of year) in the other front bed. Didn't plant dahlias in the back yard this year. Was lucky to have any planted at all thanks to my husband. Screwed up my back in the early spring so he stepped in and planted 77 for me. I pitched about 30.
"What a person needs in gardening is a cast iron back with a hinge in it" Charles Dudley Warner (spelling edited by Dinu lol)

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