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Dahlia tubers

Hi I am very new to gardening as im sure you can guess

I planted a couple of dahlia tubers last spring and they were beautiful strong plants right through to october. Then I forgot all about them until i started to plan my garden for this year. I decided to try and lift them to check they hadnt rotted over winter and to try and take some cuttings.

So I lifted one today and it is absolutely massive, must have atleast 20 tubers and all appear very firm, now im stuck, i dont have a tray large enough and I have no idea how to seperate them. I put the whole thing in one of my kids old toyboxes with some compost for now but as I dont have a greenhouse its not practical to try and sqeeze that onto a windowsill!

If i do cut the individual tubers off will I still get strong large plants this year?


  • PerkiPerki Posts: 2,363

    No you cant cut the tubers in half they are just a storage vessel for the plant, You can split dahlia plants but each plant must have eyes, they are around the neck between the stems and tubers, it easier to google ( dahlia eyes ) 

    If its a as big as you say it might be easier to use a saw and cut right down the middle of the stem. 

    If its to much hassle you could just get a bigger pot and grow it on for cutting, then plant out into the garden when the weather better. Bigger tuber  - bigger plant more flowers.

  • Bright starBright star Posts: 1,145

    You could just leave it where it was and as the shoots start to sprout and reach a height where they need to be pinched out to produce bushier plants, use the bits that you pinch out as cuttings.

    Life's tragedy is that we get old too soon and wise too late.

  • Sounds as if you can risk leaving your tubers in overwinter, lifting and dividing every 3 or 4 years. Break off as many tuber pieces with eyes as you need and pot up. Any old container will do. All the food is in the tuber, you just need to keep any foliage fresh with little water. Pinch for bushiness and plant out towards end of May, when fear of frost is over. Keep pots outside if mild, whip inside if frosty.

  • Thank you all for your advice, i cut it into four sections and have potted 3 into quality street tubs and put them on the windowsill and popped a section back in the ground.

    I didnt realise I should pinch out as they grow so will definately do that this year.

    Im hoping to be able to take some earlyish cuttings this year just to see if I can really and ofcourse because I dont think you can have too many beautiful flowers

  • PerkiPerki Posts: 2,363

    Just keep an eye out for the slugs , they like the young shoots the most. 

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