Bulbs forum: Help me grow Dahlias

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Name: Neal Linville
Winchester, KY (Zone 6a)
Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Bulbs Cottage Gardener Roses Irises
Garden Ideas: Level 2 Celebrating Gardening: 2015
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gemini_sage
Jul 27, 2010 8:40 PM CST
Rita, I'm curious how your Dahlias are doing now that the height of summer is here?
"...and don't think the garden loses its ecstasy in winter. It's quiet, but the roots are down there riotous." Rumi
Name: Rita
North Shore, Long Island, NY
Zone 6B
Charter ATP Member Seed Starter Tomato Heads I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Vegetable Grower Lover of wildlife (Raccoon badge)
Birds Garden Ideas: Master Level Butterflies Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Roses Photo Contest Winner: 2016
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Newyorkrita
Jul 30, 2010 6:24 PM CST
They are all in the garbage and thrown out long ago. Some started growing and crisped up when we had all this heat, the others tiny bit of growth but then all the tubers rotted. I give up. Totally give up. I will never try iris tubers again. This was my last shot. Obviously I am not capable of growing them.
Name: Dahlianut
Calgary, AB Zone 3a
NE Alumni
Charter ATP Member Garden Ideas: Level 2 Seed Starter Region: Canadian Irises Daylilies
Lilies Bulbs Garden Art Birds Hummingbirder Region: Northeast US
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dahlianut
Jul 30, 2010 6:55 PM CST
That is very disappointing Newyorkrita. I have a list in 'The Great Book of LIsts' of 'Things I Have Luved and Killed'. I find that sometimes when I look back at it I recover from my disappointment and try again but sometimes not. Thanks for sharing your experience. Hoping to see you sharing your joyous experience with other bulbous things
Name: Annie
Western WA Zone USDA 7b
Relax. It's only a small setback.
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
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Poochella
Jul 30, 2010 10:37 PM CST
Rita, you must be so disgusted after your failures but I know there's a solution. Please don't give up on these beautiful flowers yet! ( Even though I gave up on roses because of chronic blackspot and deer nibbling Big Grin .)

From reading above, it sounds like you need to control slugs, for sure. They will mercilessly mow down a tender young dahlia shoot in a New York Minute.
If they're rotting, you might be planting too early in too wet and too cool soil. They need no water until the tubers sprout a few inches above ground and the tubers develop feeder roots to actually absorb the water either we, or Mother Nature, provides them. Otherwise, it's like plunking a potato in a cold, wet muck and expecting it to stay nice and healthy.

I really encourage you to look at your soil drainage, slug control, and planting time to assure that your tubers are going into well-drained soil of at least 50ยบ. I've rotted more tubers than Doan's has pills over the years by planting too early in our notorious cold, wet NW springs but have finally learned to either pot them up and easily transplant later when the gardens are warmed up, or to just flat out wait til mid-May or even late May to plant outdoors.

I don't have a huge amount of really large ones, but if you're willing to try again, I'll gladly send you a box of free medium- medium/large tubers to try as well. Just tell me what colors you like. One of these times, you've got to be successful and then all your dahlia woes will be in the distant past. Maybe not all of them, but there's nothing like a little success to spur one on to greater things. They really are one of the most fabulous, long-blooming gems in the garden.

One of my favorite dahlia websites is in your neck of the woods. Their 'Learning Center' has good photos and tips that may be of help too. Don't give up!
http://www.midislanddahlia.com...
Annie
[url]http://cubits.org/dahlias[/url]
Name: Neal Linville
Winchester, KY (Zone 6a)
Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Bulbs Cottage Gardener Roses Irises
Garden Ideas: Level 2 Celebrating Gardening: 2015
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gemini_sage
Jul 31, 2010 4:51 AM CST
Oh poo! Rita, I'm so sorry to hear that. If its any consolation, seems like it has not been a good year for Dahlias around here either with the early onset of heat. Typically I can cut bouquets of them at the end of July, Friday I was cutting some flowers and only had 2 decent Dahlia blooms to bring in....after planting 55 this spring!

How about the dwarf potted ones you picked up in bloom- did they survive?
"...and don't think the garden loses its ecstasy in winter. It's quiet, but the roots are down there riotous." Rumi
Name: Rita
North Shore, Long Island, NY
Zone 6B
Charter ATP Member Seed Starter Tomato Heads I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Vegetable Grower Lover of wildlife (Raccoon badge)
Birds Garden Ideas: Master Level Butterflies Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Roses Photo Contest Winner: 2016
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Newyorkrita
Jul 31, 2010 1:30 PM CST
Neal- The potted ones I bought in flower I planted inground and they are fine. Bloomed for a long time and now taking a rest and budding up again. It seems I can grow them if I buy them but just can't start my own.

Annie- Thanks for you helpful and encouraging post but I am too fed up to try again. I actually was trying again after years of off again, on again trying for dahlias and not doing well. After all my really hard effort this spring to do it all right, this is the worst I have ever done as not even one of them made it. And I know those tubers were excellent from a great source. They are planted in the same garden and same type of soil all my other plants thrive in. No clay type soil here, its gardensoil which has compost mixed in thru the years on top of builders sand if you dig way down.

So, as I suspected its just me. Roses I can grow easily, I have about 200. Daylilies, Lilies, Siberian and Brearded Iris and all sorts of other flowers. Just not Dahlias.
Name: Neal Linville
Winchester, KY (Zone 6a)
Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Bulbs Cottage Gardener Roses Irises
Garden Ideas: Level 2 Celebrating Gardening: 2015
Image
gemini_sage
Jul 31, 2010 3:26 PM CST
I'm going to have to have a talk with Dahlias, they're totally silly in not liking you, LOL. Stick your tongue out at them and say "nah nah..Roses and Lilies love me!"
"...and don't think the garden loses its ecstasy in winter. It's quiet, but the roots are down there riotous." Rumi
Name: Annie
Western WA Zone USDA 7b
Relax. It's only a small setback.
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
Image
Poochella
Jul 31, 2010 4:07 PM CST
It sounds like you are under the curse of the dahlia and I can't blame you. Everything sounds perfect with sand and compost worked in, roses etc thriving. If you have a change of heart next Spring, just give me a holler.

Annie
[url]http://cubits.org/dahlias[/url]
Name: Dahlianut
Calgary, AB Zone 3a
NE Alumni
Charter ATP Member Garden Ideas: Level 2 Seed Starter Region: Canadian Irises Daylilies
Lilies Bulbs Garden Art Birds Hummingbirder Region: Northeast US
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dahlianut
Aug 3, 2010 7:44 PM CST
O ya Newyorkrita please give dear Pooch a ping if you change your mind. She has oodles of beautious tuberlifik dahlias that oft have many offspring that need homes in the spring. O I so sound like a tuber salespeople, don't I and they aren't even my tubers AACK! Rolling on the floor laughing
Name: Annie
Western WA Zone USDA 7b
Relax. It's only a small setback.
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
Image
Poochella
Aug 3, 2010 8:34 PM CST
Yeah, I just hate to see someone not be able to enjoy dahlias when they have all the ingredients to grow them. But you can't drive yourself crazy trying either... that's like me and roses.
Annie
[url]http://cubits.org/dahlias[/url]
Name: Rita
North Shore, Long Island, NY
Zone 6B
Charter ATP Member Seed Starter Tomato Heads I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Vegetable Grower Lover of wildlife (Raccoon badge)
Birds Garden Ideas: Master Level Butterflies Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Roses Photo Contest Winner: 2016
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Newyorkrita
Aug 4, 2010 10:10 AM CST
Well the point would be that I have tried. I have tried over and over. I am a stubborn person and not the type to give up easily. But on the other hand I don't have a huge yard and don't feel like messing with something again, that I know just never works for me.

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