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When to Water Dahlias?

TimmyMagicTimmyMagic Posts: 135
I planted quite a lot of dahlias just over a week ago. Most I planted into the ground, but also quite a few in pots.

I read that dahlias should be given a good watering when planted, but then only watered once growth starts appearing. Is this good advice?

We have had some rain but also some very hot sunny days. I watered them after planting the tubers, but some of them (especially the potted ones) have no growth yet and the soil seems very dry. Should I water them or resit the urge to do so until they show signs of growth?

Hoping for some advice. Thanks.

Posts

  • B3B3 Posts: 27,304
    When you want them dormant in the winter, you keep them dry so it makes sense to me that they will need some water to get going but make sure the soil drains well or they will rot.
    In London. Keen but lazy.
  • TimmyMagicTimmyMagic Posts: 135
    @B3 Yes, this is what I was thinking. I know they should not be sitting in water as they could rot, so will be careful. The advice I read about not watering until they show signs of growth just doesn't seem right to me. 
  • NollieNollie Posts: 7,511
    I’m a Dahlia newbie, but in the ground should be fine if watered in well as there should be sufficient moisture in the soil, so that advice not to water until you see growth is normal, at least according to all I read on the subject. Growing in pots you need to keep the soil moist so I think your potted ones need water. I have grown Dahlias in pots the first time this year, they all grew away well and are now planted out and settled in nicely, following the advice of Sarah Raven:

    https://www.sarahraven.com/articles/how_to_plant_dahlia_tubers.htm
    Mountainous Northern Catalunya, Spain. Hot summers, cold winters.
  • TimmyMagicTimmyMagic Posts: 135
    @Nollie I had actually already watched the Sarah Raven video, which was very good. It's just her advice is more geared towards growing them in a poly tunnel / greenhouse / starting off indoors. My potted ones are outside on the patio. But I missed the bit about keeping the pots moist, so thanks for reminding me of her advice. 

    I'll water the potted ones tomorrow morning and keep moist from now on. Thanks and good luck with your dahlias! 
  • B3B3 Posts: 27,304
    Mine are in containers outside watered when dry and rained on. They're doing ok. Watch out for slugs or they'll slice off the shoots before you even see them. When the plants get bigger, they lose interest.
    In London. Keen but lazy.
  • BrexiteerBrexiteer Posts: 955
    I soak my tubers before planting to rehydrate them then water them every 3 days in a plastic greenhouse or windowsill. Never lost any as yet fingers crossed. One thing I did notice is that if they are not soaked they take a little longer to shoot 
  • TimmyMagicTimmyMagic Posts: 135
    @Old Arthritic marc I didn't soak mine, but maybe I will next year. 

    I feed them some blood fish & bone a couple of days ago, a week after planting.... which I think was what Sarah Raven advised (could be wrong - I read lots of different advice). Hopefully this will help.
  • NollieNollie Posts: 7,511
    I didn’t soak mine either, just watered in well and they all came up strong and healthy. Ones grown outside are much slower to get going - my first and only Dahlia, Bishop of Llandalf, planted direct in the ground came up really well the same year, but this year its very slow to get going. Not helped by me not being quick enough on snail patrol so the new shoot got chomped. Growing back slowly. 

    Fingers crossed yours emerge, TM!


    Mountainous Northern Catalunya, Spain. Hot summers, cold winters.
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