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Dahlia - what's wrong?

My daughter is new to gardening and recently bought her first dahlia. She's been watering it every day. Has she overwatered it? Can it be revived? Grateful for any advice. 


  • Hostafan1Hostafan1 Posts: 28,599
    I'd say first of all that pot is far too small and ,despite watering, I'd say it's become dry at some point.
    I'd move it into a much bigger pot, cut the height  to about 12" and start again. Plenty of time for it to perk back up and give a good display later.
  • B3B3 Posts: 18,319
    I think the pot is much too small.
    In London. Keen but lazy.
  • fidgetbonesfidgetbones Posts: 15,263
    It needed a bigger pot or putting in the ground. If you tip it out of the pot, you will see if it is dry or not. I suspect that the water is running straight through and not wetting the compost. Cut it down by half, and repot into a larger pot if you want to keep it potted. You could put a thick layer of newspaper or a sheet of cardboard across the bottom of that wooden tub, and fill it with compost. Mix some soil in if you can .
    You don't stop doing new things because you get old, you get old because you stop doing new things. <3
  • ButtercupdaysButtercupdays Posts: 3,646
    Various possibilities:
    it may have been exposed to too much sun & heat without being properly hardened off, if it came straight from a protected environment.
    It may have been under or overwatered, either way the plant goes limp.

    What to do. The plant should be saveable , flowers are less likely.
    Remove it from pot and find out mif the tuber is still firm, no soggy rotten patches.
    If so, cut off the flowering stems and repot, mpc will do for now and water in.
    Water again only when soil feels dry when a finger is stuck into the soil to about an inch down.
    Cross fingers and wait.
    There should be some regrowth and if she is very lucky there may be flower or two.
    But the foliage will help the tuber build up so it can be stored somewhere frost free over winter and restarted next year, hopefully with a happier outcome. :)
  • LynLyn DevonPosts: 18,037
    Agree with others, that pot is far too small, put it in the open ground or in a 15” pot, if you tip it out you will see how big the tuber is. 
    Cut back to half and water well. 
    Gardening on the wild, windy west side of Dartmoor. 

  • Thank you all for your advice. It's great to read your positive comments. 
  • Hostafan1Hostafan1 Posts: 28,599
    our pleasure I'm sure. 
    I agree with @Lyn: if you knock that plant from the pot, I reckon it's going to virtually ALL tuber and hardly any compost.
    I'd say it needs something the size of that whole wooden box it's sitting in to thrive.
    An old compost sack might line it, or a heavy duty bin sack?
  • Thank you  :)
  • Nanny BeachNanny Beach Posts: 6,066
    Big plant small pot, suffering from dehydration AND starvation, remove flowers that are already out, put in the ground if you can, lots of water.
  • Thank you
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