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Sprouting Dahlia Tubers

Can anyone offer advice? I started my Dahlia tubers (some grown from seed last year and some bought as tubers this year) into growth last month and I'm going to try and take some cuttings from the stubby shoots. However my three Arabian Night tubers have put on too much leggy growth, up to 16 inches, Should I cut these tall shoots off? If I do can I use the tips to propergate as I would shorter sprouts? Finally should I be cutting sprouts off with a small part of the tuber attached as some web sites suggest or will that stop the tuber forming new sprouts from the eye. Many thanks.


  • discodavediscodave Posts: 510

    Hi Caroline if you type Dahlia Tubers into the search box here it will give you loads of hints and tips and posts on the subject.

    Good luck..


  • The only thing that I was advised was not to use any stem that was hollow.image

  • Thanks Dave & Cris. Some great info on dahlias on the site as you said Dave, and having read a few of the articles etc, I've pinched out the growing tips on all the sprouts to encourage bushyness, but there's nothing that tells me if cutting off the leggy shoots will mean no further shoots from the eye, I don't want a leggy sad looking dahlia in the garden but it's better than no dahlia at all!
  • Gold1locksGold1locks Posts: 498

    You will only get side shoots from a stem if the stem has formed a leaf node, as that's where the side shoots develop. I thought that you only got one shoot per eye but I might be wrong. 

  • Hallo

    In response to Caroline21's post, in my experience even one tuber shoot can become a very substantial and bushy plant as it branches out and the stem thickens.

    I have a related but slightly different question if anyone can help. This year, because of the cold weather, I departed from my usual practice of either planting my tubers straight in the ground, or in a large pot to move around the garden. I decided instead to start my tubers off in shallow trays of compost to get them going. I divided them before storing and have successfully got (mostly) one shoot per tuber. Sarah Raven's video is great on taking cuttings to plant up from this situation and I have done that where I have more than one shoot. But nowhere can I find any advice on what you do now with a tuber and main shoot that you do not want to take as a cutting but simply want to grow on. I have shoots of differing heights and am desperate now to pot on (and have done with a few to experiment) but my worry is that the tuber needs to be two or three inches below the surface, and my shoot will rot if it is covered with soil at this stage. Can anyone advise/ reassure?

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