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Bishop of Auckland dahlia buds won't open

After so,e storm damage I salvaged the broken stems of my Bishop of Auckland dahlia and took them indoors to use as cut flowers.

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I've just noticed a recurrence of something that I have seen happen on other dahlias in my garden. The buds develop very full and tight but don't open.

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They eventually just die...

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or or actually seem to rot. The ones shown above have not reached that stage yet and I'm wondering if there is anything I can do to help them open. 

Anyone know?

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Posts

  • fidgetbonesfidgetbones Derbyshire but with a Nottinghamshire postcode. Posts: 16,470

    Unopened dahlia buds are flat like buttons. Once they have flowered they go pointed and squidgy.  You need to deadhead regularly to keep the flowers coming.  The flowers in the second photo look like they have already flowered and on the way to seed heads.

  • Yes, I agree with fidgetbones.  Having grown this variety of dahlia for the past two years I have learned that once the flowers have finished or are dead the buds become pointed like those in the second and third picture.  Once the flowers finish cut the stems of those dead flowers/pointed buds off a few inches below them.  As fidget says, do this regularly to keep a supply of new flowers coming. I try to dead head mine every 2 or 3 days if possible.

  • Birdy13Birdy13 Posts: 595

    Thankyou Fidget and Donkey - I do dead head my dahlias generally but somehow must have missed seeing the transition from bloom to finished bud in my Bishop of Auckland, probably because I've not been well enough to get out gardening enough this year, or possibly because so many other finished flowers are more obviously dead.

    Now I think of it, I remember being thrilled at one point earlier on this summer when I noticed how many more flowers had appeared this year...

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    ...last year it only had about 3 - this year possibly more than a dozen (more than in this photo) I dead headed a few that were clearly finished but must have just not connected the blooms with the finished buds, I suppose because they look too glossy to be dead.

    i shall watch out for the flattened buds next year - it's probably too late to deadhead  this arrangement but I shall try it anyway. Thanks again both.

  • Birdy13Birdy13 Posts: 595

    Sorry about the inverted photo - probably needs cropping.

    Last edited: 16 September 2017 11:03:22

  • FairygirlFairygirl west central ScotlandPosts: 49,135

    Do you mean deadhead the ones in the vase? They won't produce new flowers once cut, Birdy. It'll tidy up the arrangement though.

    If you can deadhead the plant outside, you'll get more flowers until the frosts come along. Great for this time of year   image 

    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....


  • Birdy13Birdy13 Posts: 595

    Fairygirl said:

    "Do you mean deadhead the ones in the vase? They won't produce new flowers once cut..."

    Thankyou, Fairygirl - I guessed that might be the case - I suppose cutting the stalks off must reprogram the plant. 

    And the arrangement does need tidying up - I'll get my secateurs...

  • FairygirlFairygirl west central ScotlandPosts: 49,135

    Yes - when you remove spent flowers, the plant puts it's energy into producing more flowers, rather than making seed, which is what it's trying to do in order to reproduce   image

    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....


  • My Bishop of Auckland and other Dahlias are still producing buds and flowers now, which the bees love (especially the single flowered dahlias), and should go on producing new flowers as Fairy mentioned until the first frosts.  In fact they seem to be having a second flush of flowers with new ones opening almost every day.  So keep enjoying your Bishop for a couple more months yet Birdy!

  • Birdy13Birdy13 Posts: 595

    If only I could Donkey - unfortunately most of the stems are now in the vase as they were so badly broken in a recent storm. I was gutted as it had become my favourite of the dahlias I have because it is so different in petal arrangement from the "Pom-Pom" type. 

    Remarkably, my other dahlias survived the storm even though are taller than me...

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    Not at their best now but you can see the height of the purple one, around 6 foot and almost as high as the pear tree to its right.

  • FairygirlFairygirl west central ScotlandPosts: 49,135

    You'll just need to get that staking done earlier next year Birdy  image

    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....


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