Dahlia bulbs - Knowledgebase Question

cincinncti, Oh
Avatar for tkloenne
Question by tkloenne
November 8, 2010
I am digging up my Dahlias -the frost has killed them. Can the cluster of bulbs attached to the roots be replanted? if so what is the best procedure and when should they be planted?
Thanks, Tom K

Answer from NGA
November 8, 2010
We recommend dahlias be dug and stored over the winter months because if the soil stays soggy, the tubers will rot. The tubers grow from a single stem and are arranged like the spokes of a wheel. When you dig, dig carefully and try to remove the entire clump all together. Divide by cutting each tuber away from the stem, leaving some of the stem attached to each tuber. The bud, or eye, that will produce a new stem will be near the top (narrow end) of the tuber, just below where it's attached to the old stem. Be careful when cutting each tuber away from the old stem so you don't damage the bud. Store the tubers in a cool but above freezing place. I line a cardboard box with peatmoss or spaghnum moss and set the tubers in, then cover over them with more peatmoss. You can replant your tubers in the spring - usually in April or May. Amend the bed with some organic matter before you replant, and place a stake in the hole as you plant so you can tie the stem up as it grows. They should grow and bloom beautifully for you next summer!

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