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Dahlias

Hi, on Fridays episode of GW Monty Don was potting up his Dahlias prior to planting them in a month’s time to help bring them on. Did he say to keep them in the dark? 
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  • Nanny BeachNanny Beach Posts: 4,534
    I can't remember if he did, but I did,tip from Sarah raven, frost free place, cover the top of the pot, completely exclude light for 10 days,brings them on a treat
  • BiljeBilje Posts: 541
    No not in the dark, they need to be somewhere warm if you can, certainly frost 
    free. Mine are in a cold greenhouse and inside an open plastic one. Keep them moist but not wet. Monty left much longer dead stems on his than I leave on mine. They re shoot from the " shoulder" where the old stem joins the tuber, I leave just about an inch. 
  • I saw Monty's loger stems and wondered too.

    Last year was the first year I plantred and grew Dahlias - I lifted mine out of the ground and cut the dead stem all the way back. just a little higher than the tubers. Hoping this hasn't 'damaged' them?
  • ObelixxObelixx Vendée, Western FrancePosts: 24,318
    I dug up all my dahlias last year as I'm planning a new and bigger bed for them.  I left the tubers upside down on the soil in our polytunnel and covered with just a net to keep off the chooks.  Didn't entirely work but they seem to have survived.  

    I potted them all up in just enough compost to cover the tubers to the shoulder and watered them.  The pots are in the PT and we've had unusually cold nights and days since but this last day or so it's warmed up and now I have shoots on half a dozen or so pots.   More to come I hope and I'll be taking some cuttings to increase my stock and sowing some more Bishop's Children as I like the single flower forms for their pollinator  accessibility.
    "We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing." - George Bernard Shaw
  • Dirty HarryDirty Harry Posts: 933
    Cool and dark for storage, mild and bright for planting is what I do.
  • Songbird-1Songbird-1 Posts: 2,157
    I always lift my dahlia as they wouldn’t survive in the ground here - too wet and cold. Planted mine up this year earlier than Monty and just put  them in the greenhouse. They are all just beginning to sprout now. In all the years I’ve grown them I have never once left them in the dark once they are potted  up. 
  • Nanny BeachNanny Beach Posts: 4,534
    I started doing the excluding light 3 years ago, found they grew much better and faster
  • SophieKSophieK Wimbledon, LondonPosts: 203
    Oh I must have missed that info. Too late for mine that are already out in the warmth and light. They seem to be doing fine.
  • FireFire LondonPosts: 8,278
    I've just potted up my new ones and they are sitting on the kitchen window sill.
  • Nanny BeachNanny Beach Posts: 4,534
    There is a world of difference between warm and frost free,I don't personally know anyone who heats their green house,we have a tubular heater in the one with the citrus which just lifts the temp to be cold,as opposed y to frost free
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