When Is it Safe to Plant Dahlia Tubers?

Updated April 17, 2017

The dahlia's brilliant blooms add long-lasting colour and variety to your garden. With the right timing and care, these flowers produce flowers all summer long.

When to Plant

Do not plant dahlia tubers outside until after the last frost of the season. Soil temperatures of 15.6 degrees Celsius indicate a good time to plant. Overly wet soil will cause the tuber to rot and make it necessary to wait until the soil dries out.

Where to Plant

Dahlias prefer full sun for most of the day and should be placed to take advantage of direct sunlight. A hot-dry climate means you can plant in an area with fewer hours of direct sunlight, mainly in the morning.

Soil Composition

Dahlias need a light soil composition. Soils with high clay content will need to have mulch or sand added to them to make it easier for the flower to grow. Moisture rich soils will need the addition of sand to promote drainage.

Water Needs

After planting, the bulb will be dormant for a short period and only needs light moisture. Soon the plant will appear and one watering a week will be enough to keep it healthy. In the heat of the summer or in hot-dry climates, it needs two waterings a week.

Early Start

To get an early start, in colder areas, plant the bulbs a few weeks early indoors in pots with a good quality potting soil. This will allow the bulb to be dormant in the warm soil for a few weeks and will speed the blooming time once planted outside.

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About the Author

Scott Whitney has been writing and editing since 2004 for the Army. Whitney has also done proofreading for e-books and written for Whitney is a certified English teacher and has a Bachelor of Arts in family history from Brigham Young University and working on a Master of Science in professional counseling.