Dahlias are a unique flower that originated in Mexico. Their sunny origin means that they thrive in warm climates, and they’re available in a vast array of varieties and colours, including the yellow, white, orange, purple, red and pink flowers in our range. We stock ball, decorative, fimbriata, pompon, single and cactus dahlias.
When dahlias bloom
Summer is the dahlia season and these flowers love basking in the warmth of the sun, so make sure you plant them in a bright spot. Plant dahlias in spring to enjoy flowers through to autumn.
Dahlia tubers aren’t winter-hardy, so you can only plant them once the risk of frost has passed; this is usually around mid-May, so it’s best to wait until then.
Dahlias will bloom until the first overnight frost, which often falls around October or November. After this point, it’s a good idea to dig up the tubers. If you don’t, they may freeze and rot.
Where to plant
We sell dahlias from 1 January through to 1 June. When you place your order, you can specify which month you want to receive your tubers – April, May or June. Some people want to bring the dahlia flower season forward by planting the tubers in pots, while others prefer to wait a little while and plant straight into the ground.
If you want to plant your dahlias before April or May, it’s best to pop them in a pot and let them grow in your house or greenhouse. When they are a little bigger and the risk of frost has passed, you can repot them in a larger pot or put them in the ground in your garden
How long do dahlias take to grow?
Dahlias will emerge from the ground around 18 days after planting. This is when you’ll see the first signs of greenery making an entrance. Keep an eye out for slugs because they love to eat the new leaves.
It’s important to remove spent flowers regularly, and it’s always a good idea to remove the stem of the spent flower down to where a new leaf or the next flower begins. This approach promotes leaf growth and flowering. It prevents the plant from wasting energy on the spent flowers as they turn into seedpods and diverts this energy to the new blooms instead.
You can also top the plants, which will encourage more flowers to grow. Topping involves removing the top of the main stem, cutting just above the third pair of leaves. This will encourage the plant to develop more lateral stems, for a stronger plant that can also produce more stems and flowers.
If you want to grow cut flowers, some varieties of dahlia are better suited to this purpose than others. In principle, you can cut any variety and display it in a vase. But our cut varieties have been selected for their long stems, excellent flowering characteristics and long life after cutting.
Their long stems make these varieties ideal for creating stunning bouquets and floral arrangements. You can cut these flowers yourself and display them in your home and make your own bouquets – no florist needed! Remember to change the water regularly once you’ve brought the flowers inside.
Varieties that are ideal for cutting include the Cafe au Lait dahlia, the Wizard of Oz dahlia and the Jowey Winnie dahlia. The Cafe au Lait dahlia is a magnificent dinnerplate dahlia with large beige-coloured flowers that are popular in bridal bouquets.
The Wizard of Oz dahlia is a beautiful soft-pink colour and looks beautiful alongside other varieties. The Jowey Winnie dahlia is a stunning pink ball dahlia that is becoming ever-more popular and always photographs beautifully. Pompon dahlias are also perfect to use as cut flowers.