Dahlias forum→When I plant my dahlias in SE Michigan

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Name: Frank Richards
Clinton, Michigan (Zone 5b)

Garden Ideas: Master Level Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Plant Identifier
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frankrichards16
May 10, 2020 6:30 PM CST
I used to plant in early May. I was wanting to get a head start. However, I discovered that tubers that I planted at the end of May (early June) did just as well if not better than the tubers I planted in early to mid May. Dahlias really do need the warmer weather to grow.
Seattle, WA (Zone 8b)
NewbieGardner
May 14, 2020 12:02 AM CST
I believe so. Generally in local nursery I find dahlia plants for sale in late may and early june..

Name: Top
Missouri (Zone 6a)
Peonies Dahlias Region: Missouri Seed Starter Zinnias Daylilies
Irises Hummingbirder
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Topdecker
May 16, 2020 7:55 AM CST
50's at night, and you'll be alright...

Top
The return of perennials in the spring can feel like once again seeing an old friend
Name: Arlene
Southold, Long Island, NY (Zone 7a)
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Tomato Heads Dahlias Houseplants Garden Ideas: Level 1 Photo Contest Winner: 2014
Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Plant Identifier Million Pollinator Garden Challenge
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pirl
Jun 24, 2020 8:48 AM CST
Same time as tomato planting works for me. Generally the last week of May works fine.
Name: Top
Missouri (Zone 6a)
Peonies Dahlias Region: Missouri Seed Starter Zinnias Daylilies
Irises Hummingbirder
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Topdecker
Jul 16, 2020 9:33 AM CST
I am far enough along this season to report...

I grew dahlias from seed - and I brought in just over 20 tubers from a pair of vendors. One vendor sold cut and wrapped tubers, the other sold the big clumps of dried roots.

The seed-grown dahlia also spent every other night on a heat mat and their days out in the sun getting hardened off. I had a pair of 1020 trays with dahlias and they rotated on the heat mat. They went from 1" paper pots to 3" plastic. I ended up with ~25 surviving plants - and they all have thus far outperformed any of the plants originating from cut tubers.

The clump planted dahlias are ahead of all of the cut tubers and have grown better than about a quarter of the plants started from seedlings. It makes sense as they have a larger reserve to draw upon. They put up unwanted extra stems, but getting to choose the best stem is a nice side benefit in my opinion.

At this point, I've had no blooms but 7 of the plants grown from seedlings are soon going to flower. Only one plant grown from tubers has a bud growing.

It is also likely that some of the varieties of dahlias that I have are not especially fast starters. For instance, Ivanetti appears to be healthy and very happy to slowly grow.

Top
The return of perennials in the spring can feel like once again seeing an old friend
[Last edited by Topdecker - Jul 16, 2020 9:35 AM (+)]
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Name: Frank Richards
Clinton, Michigan (Zone 5b)

Garden Ideas: Master Level Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Plant Identifier
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frankrichards16
Jul 16, 2020 5:59 PM CST
Topdecker said:I am far enough along this season to report...

I grew dahlias from seed - and I brought in just over 20 tubers from a pair of vendors. One vendor sold cut and wrapped tubers, the other sold the big clumps of dried roots.

The seed-grown dahlia also spent every other night on a heat mat and their days out in the sun getting hardened off. I had a pair of 1020 trays with dahlias and they rotated on the heat mat. They went from 1" paper pots to 3" plastic. I ended up with ~25 surviving plants - and they all have thus far outperformed any of the plants originating from cut tubers.

The clump planted dahlias are ahead of all of the cut tubers and have grown better than about a quarter of the plants started from seedlings. It makes sense as they have a larger reserve to draw upon. They put up unwanted extra stems, but getting to choose the best stem is a nice side benefit in my opinion.

At this point, I've had no blooms but 7 of the plants grown from seedlings are soon going to flower. Only one plant grown from tubers has a bud growing.

It is also likely that some of the varieties of dahlias that I have are not especially fast starters. For instance, Ivanetti appears to be healthy and very happy to slowly grow.

Top


Great report Top! My plants are only about 1 foot high at this point. I did have a couple of tubers that failed to come up. I do not expect any flowers until August.

Also, I did not expect an ad in the middle of your post:)

Name: Frank Richards
Clinton, Michigan (Zone 5b)

Garden Ideas: Master Level Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Plant Identifier
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frankrichards16
Jul 16, 2020 6:16 PM CST
Now that I think about it, I do not think even Fackbook puts ads in the middle of a post. Clearly, NGA is a leader.
Name: Dan
NE Ohio (Zone 6a)
psudan
Jul 16, 2020 7:09 PM CST
Best of luck with your dahlias, Top! Almost all the tallest and healthiest plants in the garden started as clumps. Every one of the duds, so far, has been a single tuber. Can't remember ever having a clump fail.

Very interesting about the ones that started as seeds. Hope they do well for you. I've never tried growing dahlias from seeds.

Name: aka Annie
WA-rural 8a to (Zone 7b)
Sandsock
Sep 30, 2020 7:26 PM CST
The seeds were easy for me, getting something besides "color" may be harder. Lots of green for the compost though!

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