Overwintering Dahlias In Pots
With a bit of effort, it is possible to overwinter tender dahlia varietes in pots so that you can enjoy their beauty for many years to come. Here are some tips on how to do it.
- Use a pot with at least a 10-inch (25 cm) depth.
- Fill the bottom of the pot with gravel and top it with a good quality potting mix.
- Dig a hole about 6 inches (15 cm) of depth and place your dahlia tubers in, splaying out the roots.
- Cover the tubers with the potting mix, making sure they stay upright and just below the soil level.
Caring For Dahlias
- Water and Fertilize: Water the pots thoroughly when the soil begins to dry out during summer months and fertilise monthly with a balanced liquid fertiliser.
- Deadheading: Deadhead faded flowers regularly as this encourages more blooms to form.
- Protect From Frost: During the winter months, keep the pots in a sheltered spot that is free from frost. It is also a good idea to cover the pots with bubble wrap or something similar just in case.
Digging Up The Tubers
When winter arrives and temperatures drop low enough, usually below 10°C (50°F), stop watering the plants and wait for the foliage to die down. Then it is time to dig up the tubers for overwintering.
- Carefully dig up the dahlia tubers and shake off any soil clinging to them.
- Lay them out on a sheet of newspaper and let them dry for a few days.
- Store the tubers in a dry, dark place. You can either place them in dry peat moss, shredded paper or sawdust. Do not store them in plastic.
When spring arrives, check your stored dahlia tubers for any signs of rot and discard any damaged ones. Then replant the healthy ones in fresh potting mix. Keep the pots in a warm, sheltered location and water regularly. With a bit of love and care, your dahlia plants should start to sprout again and continue to bring you joy for many years to come.