misplaced dahlias

unclehead_gwJune 2, 2010

After weeks of unplantable (is that a word?) weather ,I finally got my vegetable garden and dahlias planted last week. As I was cleaning out my tool shed today,I found a paper bag with two more dahlia tubers I had forgotten. These tubers have sprouts that are nine inches long with leaves forming. I recently posted a question about planting tubers with three inch sprouts and was told I could cover the entire tuber and sprout with soil. Should I trim off some of this long sprout or just sort of "spiral" it under the soil? I don't want to plant them too deep,but doubt I should leave very much out of the ground. Your help is very much appreciated by this newbie gardener.

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keriann_lakegeneva(5B WI/IL border)

I would clip it off just above the first leaf node and only bury the tuber at a max of 3" deep.

Make sure you harden it off because it is not used to the UV rays yet.

How fun! What a cool suprise!


    Bookmark   June 2, 2010 at 11:30AM
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Thanks for the response,Keriann. The first set of tiny leaves are about three inches up from the tuber so should I leave them out of the soil? I hate to ask stupid questions but I'm still learning and thank everyone for your patience. This has been a very trying year. I had my vegetable garden tilled in early April which is at least a month earlier than normal. Then the rain started and I finally planted last week. It's raining again and the forecast says we may get 2 1/2" by tomorrow night. Early this morning I had a big buck sleeping in the backyard next to one of my raised beds. I went out and chased him away and found he had eaten the buds off all my stargazer lilies. Guess the Asiatics weren't good enough for him. lol There are no woods around here,so where do they come from? Troubles, troubles. Thanks again, Unc

    Bookmark   June 2, 2010 at 2:48PM
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keriann_lakegeneva(5B WI/IL border)

We must live in the same region, with all the rain. I am right on the WI/IL border.

Yes, I would bury the tuber right up to the first set of leaves (so the leaves are above the soil line). If it quite a stretch to the next leaf node I would clip it off at the first set so it will not flop later in life. I am glad that I don't have deer. It seems like every other critter but no deer thank heavens, nothing stops them, even their massive feet trample everything even if they don't take a nibble.

And there is no stupid questions! I learned by many experiments and doing what works for me best. There are probably 10 ways to plant your tuber, I just share what has worked the best for me over the years.

How fun that your veggy garden is planted, I love watching them mature and produce fruit, I still find it amazing.

Happy Gardening


    Bookmark   June 3, 2010 at 6:55AM
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Reminds me of my very first experience with dahlias. I moved into my very first house with a garden space in my 20's and my mother gave me a few tubers. They were in a 12x12x12 cardboard box, that got shoved under a table in a room that was going to become my studio space and were completely forgotten.

In July I noticed something red under the table, and low and behold a dahlia had sprouted and flowered with no soil. water or sun, and was poking up out of the box!

    Bookmark   June 4, 2010 at 7:45AM
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