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Dahlia Problem

Last autumn/early winter I lifted my dahlias as usual and stored in the same way as I have for some years.  However, this spring when I potted them up under cover the leaves when they appeared were stunted and distorted.  In common with (I believe) most dahlias this year they have also been slow to produce flowers.  
Some of the plants never really got off the starting blocks and have been chucked.  However others have rallied and are producing flowers.  However, for example, on my Karma Choc quite a lot have flowers have now appeared and whilst most are as one would expect about 20% are spiky in form (although rather attractive).  Is this a fungus or just the result of this year's unusual summer?
Should I get rid of the lot, clean the earth and start again?

Posts

  • LynLyn DevonPosts: 19,859
    Been a funny old summer but I wouldn’t worry to much and certainly wouldn’t throw them away if you like them, wait until the green had died down, then lift, dry out and store for next year and try again.
    I don’t lift mine planted out in the garden, but that’s your choice, some people do, some don’t, depends where you live.  I always remove them from the pots though as pots can freeze more that the open ground. 

    Gardening on the wild, windy west side of Dartmoor. 

  • I've a sunflower that's manged to produce only 4 petals!  I might be wrong but I always thought that the plant did whatever it could to produce a flower head, so if it doesn't have the resources to do it properly then you can end up with these mutants.
  • Lyn said:
    Been a funny old summer but I wouldn’t worry to much and certainly wouldn’t throw them away if you like them, wait until the green had died down, then lift, dry out and store for next year and try again.
    I don’t lift mine planted out in the garden, but that’s your choice, some people do, some don’t, depends where you live.  I always remove them from the pots though as pots can freeze more that the open ground. 


  • Hostafan1Hostafan1 Posts: 31,564
    My dahlias have never been better than they are this year.
    Devon.
  • Janie BJanie B LincolnshirePosts: 832
    Mine are generally weaker this year... fewer flowers and the flowers that are there are less impressive. Do dahlia plants have a 'shelf life' or do they go on forever, getting bigger and better until they are split? 
  • fidgetbonesfidgetbones Posts: 15,851
    Mine usually split themselves when I dig them up. Other than that I tend to leave them as they are. They get repotted each Spring and go out in the ground at the end of May. This year I have had to do a huge amount of watering as they were wilting in the heat.
    You don't stop doing new things because you get old, you get old because you stop doing new things. <3
  • Mine are looking wonderful too and are a delight to see, even though they are planted too close together really. They don't seem to mind the wind or the rain and only got the minimum of water through the hot weather because I simply didn't have any to give them!
    The tubers will get bigger in good years, but decrease again in poor ones, they are just somewhere to store food.
  • BobTheGardenerBobTheGardener Leicestershire, UKPosts: 11,336
    Mine all stay in the ground and it has been pretty much a no-show this year - the cold winter did for most of them, slugs got some of the remaining few then the heat and drought stopped the remainder from developing.  Those that remain are just starting to produce buds but don't look like they'll come to much.  Looking forward to sowing new seed early next year under glass though - I love the way they can be sown, grow huge (some 'giant' hybrids 6ft plus) and bloom (some 8" across) all in the same season.  They produce good tubers, too (if the weather doesn't get them!) :)
    A trowel in the hand is worth a thousand lost under a bush.
  • fidgetbonesfidgetbones Posts: 15,851
    I got some tubers of Kelvin Floodlight from Lidl this year. They have grown to 5ft, need strong stakes, and have bright yellow flowers 8 inch across. All in one season from a dried up tuber. They really brighten up the border.
    You don't stop doing new things because you get old, you get old because you stop doing new things. <3
  • debs64debs64 West Midlands, on the edge of the Black Country Posts: 4,204
    My dark ref dahlia in a pot is covered with powdery mildew obviously it's not happy. Planning to move all dahlias to cut flower bed in allotment next spring so should I try to save this one or will it infect others? Never tried dahlias before but fancied some late summer colour.
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