How to Plant Dahlia Tubers

How to Plant Dahlia Tubers

Are you ready to get your hands dirty and transform your garden into a colorful paradise? Planting dahlia tubers is a fantastic way to add a burst color to your garden. Here are some tips and tricks.


Getting Started

Before you start planting, choose a sunny spot in your garden with well-draining soil. Dahlias love the sun, so make sure they get plenty of light throughout the day.

When to Plant

Dahlias are frost sensitive. The best time to plant is when your soil is warmer than 55 degrees. Traditionally Mother's Day is the perfect time to plant your Dahlias. They favor similar conditions to planting tomatoes. Dahlias can be started in earlier Spring indoors. See our blog Get a Headstart on Dahlias

Planting Process

  1. Pick a spot with lots of Sun and well draining soil. Dig a hole about 8 inches deep
  2. Prepare the spot by mixing in compost, coconut coir or enriched garden soil to give your dahlia tubers nutrients and improve drainage. 
  3. Place the tuber clump on the loose soil with the stem and Eyes facing up.
  4. Cover the tubers with soil mix and water gentlyl. Soil should be damp, not

Watering and Maintenance

After planting, Dahlias do not need additional water until your first green sprouts show up. This may take up to two weeks. Once sprouting make sure to water your dahlia plants regularly, especially during summer's dry spells. Keep an eye out for any pests or diseases and take action promptly to protect your plants. Fertilize with Flower or Tomato fertilizer according to Manufacturer's directions. 

Pinching and Support

When your first dahlia sprout is 8-10" tall pinch the central growing tip off. This encourages the plant to sprout more bloom holding branches and helps manage dahlia height. This is the perfect time to add support if you choose. We do not net any of our Dahlias and prefer to stake them with Tomato Twine and Posts. Tomato Cages also work very well. Dahlias do not need to be pinched or staked to succeed. However, taking the time to pinch and support increases the number of blooms, length of stems and protects your plant from wind.

Harvesting Blooms

Dahlias take about 90 days from sprouting to bloom. Here at HHF this is usually around July. We get a few blooms and then the heat hits. Don't Worry! Dahlias are a Fall Superstar! They may struggle in a hot, dry summer. Just keep them watered and bug free and in late summer there's buckets of blooms. In Arlington, Virginia our prime time is September-early November. As your dahlia plants grow, you'll be rewarded with stunning blooms.  Whether you're a flower farmer or just love having fresh cut flowers at home, dahlias are perfect for creating beautiful arrangements. Cut flowers often to keep the blooms coming. Don't be afraid to cut deeply to promote long stems. As long as 3/4 of the plant is left your cuts will stimulate new growth. We cut or dead head every two weeks. 

By following these simple steps, you'll soon be on your way to becoming a dahlia planting pro. Enjoy the process and watch your garden bloom with these gorgeous flowers!