Good Dahlias for beginners?

tmac96(Z5, OH)June 14, 2009

I would like to try my hand at Dahlias but don't know where to begin. There are SO many varieties! I'm not sure if any are more finicky than others, so I thought I'd come here for advice. Here is what I am looking for:

-Heavy bloomer -- I'm not so much concerned with the size of the blooms as much as I am the amount of blooms. I would like something that blooms quite a bit (although good sized blooms are nice!)

-Something not TOO tall -- maybe around 3 feet or less.

-Something that is sturdy -- I realize staking is likely necessary, but the stronger the plant, the better.

Any suggestions for Dahlias like this that are also maybe a little more forgiving for a newbie like me? Also, any suggestions on where to purchase for spring of next year? TIA!!

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Poochella(7 WA)

What colors do you prefer? Some easy reliable ones for me have been Robinhood a 3ft orange ball; Honka, cute as can be prolific yellow orchid form; Nescio 2.5 ft bright red with lots of blooms, but smaller, at 2.5-3 inches. Cameo is a lovely pastel yellow waterlily with flushes of blooms on a 3.5ft plant.

Pride of Place and Willo Borealis have been easy and good bloomers but are small pompons in dark purple and lavender, respectively. Pride of Place is 4 ft for me, Willo Borealis barely 3.

I'm sure there are more that would come to mind especially if you named some color preferences.

    Bookmark   June 15, 2009 at 12:51AM
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tmac96(Z5, OH)

Thanks for the suggestions! I will definitely check them out. :-)

As far as color preferences, I really like pinks, dark purples and reds. Oranges are nice too! I like really full blooms also, if that helps.

Thanks again!

    Bookmark   June 15, 2009 at 8:36AM
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corgicorner(Mass 6/7)

Go to the bottom of THIS page and click on 2, which will bring you to the second page of 30 mesages. The third (3) message is "Dahlia Information" by me, corgicorner. Open it and read it which will give you information on the American Dahlia Society's directions on growing dahlias. I suggest that you download it, read it, and keep it for further information when you need it. This is an excellent article from a dependable source.

Good luck. Enjoy your dahlias now, and hopefully for years to come.

    Bookmark   June 15, 2009 at 9:09PM
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tmac96(Z5, OH)

Thanks for the info! I'll definitely read up!

One other thing I forgot to mention regarding what I'm looking for -- I live in zone 5, so my growing season isn't long. An early bloomer would be nice. :-)

    Bookmark   June 16, 2009 at 1:32PM
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Poochella(7 WA)

You might try Riverdance a cheerful red anemone with lots of early blooms. It gets taller than 3.5' for me though, and is a very broad plant that would require a strong stake for sure.

Raz Ma Taz is a small (

Nescio is also 3' or less and early to bloom. You can always try to get a jumpstart on your season by starting in pots.
Good luck!

    Bookmark   June 16, 2009 at 3:11PM
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tmac96(Z5, OH)

Wow, those look great Poochella! THANKS!

    Bookmark   June 17, 2009 at 8:58AM
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