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Tips for Digging and Storing Dahlia Tubers

How is it that time of year already? I thought the pandemic would make the months feel slow but instead time seems to have sped up! I think the weather is confused, someone needs to inform winter that fall has not yet fully arrived and therefore snow can not be falling from the sky...! Don't get me wrong, I love winter! I love all things warm and cozy; hot cocoa, scarfs, sitting by our fireplace with a good book, But snow before Halloween is just a little SCARY! lol... see what I did there? I crack myself up! Hopefully you chuckled too.

On Sunday we decided it was time to finish preparing the garden for winter. This was our first year planting Dahlia tubers. We began with 6 tubers in the hopes they would multiply by 3. Dahlia tubers are a bit of an investment but they multiply after one year and then you can divide.

Diesel was super helpful by bringing me all the sticks haha!

Supplies needed for digging tubers:

1. pitch fork

2. bucket

3. hose

4. gloves

I learned from Floret's online class to use a pitch fork instead of a shovel, decreasing the chances of stabbing a tuber.

Step 1: dig up the dahlia tubers

Step 2: wash the tubers using water

Step 3: let the tubers dry

Step 4: be careful when handling the tubers. This was our first time storing tubers and we made our fair-share of mistakes. The clumps are pretty fragile and you don't want to break off a tuber without an eye.

Step 5: divide where there is a tuber neck and eye (see photo below). We used snippers to help divide.

Step 6: store tubers in a tub or air tight container with peat-moss or vermiculite. Be sure the tubers don't touch, this way if one goes bad they all won't rot.

Step 7: keep in a dry and cool (but above freezing) basement or garage.

We can't wait to continue to grow our variety selection and knowledge of dahlia tubers!

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