Dahlias forum→Dahlia looks healthy but will not bloom

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Name: Kelley Reid
Pikeville, Kentucky (Appalachi (Zone 6b)
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kotka3
Sep 30, 2020 11:06 AM CST
I have a dahlia that has remained rather short and up until recently was not very bushy. It has recently gotten more bushy. The main issue is that it has not bloomed in a couple of months. I deadheaded the plant when it was still blooming but the plant has stopped blooming altogether now. It sits in a nice sunny spot and received ample water. I have fertilized it a couple of times over the past couple of months (resulting in the increased leafy-ness, I believe) but have only gotten leaves. I transplanted it into a larger pot about a month ago as it was looking a bit wilty. It looks very healthy now in the larger pot.
Thumb of 2020-09-30/kotka3/3a3680

Name: Big Bill
Livonia, Michigan (Zone 6a)
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BigBill
Sep 30, 2020 11:18 AM CST
There could be a simple explanation in that Fall is coming and the light is decreasing both in intensity and number of hours.
Dahlias require a good amount of sun in order to bloom. They also like a decent amount of fertilizer in order to produce buds.
If you select a fertilizer with too much nitrogen, that alone may keep them from blooming. Something on the order of 5-10-10 would be better then 10-10-10 or 20-20-20.
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Name: Kelley Reid
Pikeville, Kentucky (Appalachi (Zone 6b)
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kotka3
Oct 3, 2020 1:42 PM CST
Is there a particular fertilizer that you find works best?

I am not sure if the season is the only reason but I definitely think it is a factor. It has not bloomed since before August. It had beautiful purple flowers previously. You can also see in the photo that it was not nearly as bushy. I can see little buds start to form, but nothing ever blooms.
Thumb of 2020-10-03/kotka3/f91863
Name: Big Bill
Livonia, Michigan (Zone 6a)
Orchids, peace and beauty
Region: United States of America Critters Allowed Growing under artificial light Echinacea Hostas Region: Michigan
Butterflies Lover of wildlife (Raccoon badge) Orchids Cat Lover Birds Bee Lover
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BigBill
Oct 3, 2020 2:12 PM CST
Well I asked the same question here a little over a year ago. I was told that Dahlias do not like a lot of nitrogen.
Last year I fed them once every two weeks or so. I did not get a lot of flowers. This year once a month with 20-20-20 and still not many blooms. I need perhaps to find something more like 5-15-15 or similar.
Rodney Wilcox Jones, my idol!
Businessman, Orchid grower, hybridizer, lived to 107!
[Last edited by BigBill - Oct 3, 2020 4:35 PM (+)]
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Name: Gary
Wyoming MN (Zone 4a)
hostasmore
Oct 3, 2020 4:19 PM CST
Kelley welcome to the Dahlia forum! I use tomato fertilizer. It is 2-5-3.
Name: Melissa
Omaha, NE (Zone 5b)
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Melissamaeday
Oct 3, 2020 6:37 PM CST
There is a lot of conflicting information when it comes to fertilizer. Might be way too late too try it this season, but I use Alaskan Morbloom (0-10-10) and mix it with fish fertilizer (5-1-1). I also use compost tea and seaweed extract. 2020 hasn't been the kindest year, so hopefully they will floriferously flower next year for you!

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