How to store dahlias in winter: the cold can destroy flowers
Beautiful autumn dahlias will become a real decoration of the garden. However, there may be problems with care, as they are heat-loving flowers that do not tolerate cold weather.
Experienced gardeners advise digging up dahlias in mid-autumn and storing them until spring. OBOZREVATEL figured out how to properly care for these flowers.
What to do with dahlias in winter
After digging, you should choose the right place to store the flowers. Room temperature will be too high for the plants, so the roots will begin to dry out and may not sprout at all in the spring. Dahlias need a dark and cool place.
One of the most popular methods is the paraffin wax shell. This method allows you to preserve the roots even at temperatures above 25℃. For waxing, buy the cheapest candles without dyes, fragrances, and additives.
- Divide the roots into several parts, each of which should have at least one bud. It is physically impossible to wax a large root system, and pests and bacteria will penetrate through untreated areas.
- The neck of each part should be tied with a thick and long thread to help hold the dahlias while immersed in paraffin.
- Heat the paraffin in a water bath at +65℃ and place the container with the paraffin in boiling water.
- Hold a part of the root by the thread. Dip it into the paraffin and take it out as soon as possible to avoid burning the roots.
Paraffin should cover the entire part, including the neck. Once it has hardened, place the dahlias in a storage container.
Important: In the spring, dahlias should be planted with paraffin wax to protect them from rot and disease. The roots will be able to grow through the shell.
Clay can be used as an alternative to paraffin. The clay "mash" should have the consistency of liquid sour cream. Dry the roots after the first dip and wait for the clay to harden. Then repeat the procedure 2-3 times. The clay crust will protect the dahlia from bacteria, pests, and rot. Before planting, wash off the clay.
You can simply put the dahlia roots in the vegetable compartment of the refrigerator. It is not necessary to separate the root system, but gardeners advise soaking it with a solution of "Fitosporin M" in the dosage indicated on the label.
Dahlias should be stored in food bags or kraft paper. Without additional protection, the roots will become damp and rot.
For storage on a balcony or loggia, try a life hack with sawdust or vermiculite. Sprinkle sawdust on the bottom of a container (for example, a cardboard box) with a layer of 10 cm, lay the plants upside down and cover with another layer of sawdust.
How not to store dahlias
The most common mistake is to simply put the dahlias dug up by the roots in the cellar or basement next to potatoes or other vegetables. If you want to get lush, bright blooms next year, avoid this storage method.
OBOZREVATEL also told you how to clean the entire garden in the fall and what to do before the leaves fall.