HOW TO GROW THE TREE DAHLIA - Dahlia imperialis
This article has been written by guest writer Marco - from livetogarden.com
Native to South America, the tree dahlia - Dahlia imperialis can be grown farther north with proper care and maintenance. Hardy to Zone 8, it is becoming increasingly popular among gardeners in the southern and western United States, and even grows wild in parts of Hawaii.
If you're looking for a sun-loving plant to add a little height to your garden and provide a splash of colour the Dahlia imperialis may be the perfect addition to your landscape.
Planting Tree Dahlias: Soil and Sun Considerations
Dahlias thrive in sunlight. Full sun is best, though some gardeners have reported success with as little as half-day sun.
Soil for dahlias should be rich and moist but can range from sandy loam to slightly clay. Drainage is extremely important, as dahlias are sensitive to both too much and too little water. Consider adding perlite or horticultural grit to your soil for improved drainage, especially if you live on the West Coast, where winters are particularly wet. Plant your tree between 8 and 12 inches deep, and mulch it heavily.
Protecting Tree Dahlias: Pruning and Sheltering
Although they like full sun, tree dahlias also need to be sheltered from wind as their bamboo-like stems are brittle and break fairly easily. You may also need to stake the stems and tie every foot or so of growth, leaving the top few feet free. Pieces of nylon make great ties because they’ll stretch as the plant grows, unlike plastic or string, which may cut into the stem, causing damage.
Tree dahlias are sensitive to frost, so if your area experiences 'colder than normal' temperatures, especially overnight, you may want to cover your plant to protect it. Use burlap, linen or even newspaper, which will let the plant breath. Plastic will trap moisture on the plant, potentially doing more harm than good.
After it flowers, the tree dahlia may prune itself, reducing its height to just a few feet. If it doesn't, you’ll need to cut the stems down for winter. You may also wish to trim new growth by up to half. If you want a bushier, rather than a taller, plant, trim the top of the dahlia tree every few months through the growing season.
Don't be surprised if your tree dahlia does not emerge with the rest of your herbaceous plants come the following spring as they are particularly late to appear, It isn't unusual for them to start their growth as late as mid-May, but don't worry as once they get going they are extremely vigorous.
For more information click onto:
CARDINAL FLOWER - Lobelia cardinalis 'Queen Victoria'
CERINTHE MAJOR 'PURPURASCENS' - The Honeywort
Clematis montana 'Grandiflora'
Dahlia Pests and Diseases
Dahlia 'War of the Roses'
DAWN REDWOOD - Metasequoia glyptostroboides
DEVIL'S TOBACCO - Lobelia tupa
Dinosaur Plants: The Cycad
Dinosaur Plants: The Sago Palm
Dinosaur Plants: The Tree Fern
Euphorbia pulcherrima - The Poinsettia
How to Care for Poinsettias
How to Grow Abutilon 'Kentish Belle'
How to Grow the Californian Lilac - Ceanothus species
HOW TO GROW CANNA LILIES
How to Grow Clematis florida 'Sieboldii'
How to Grow Crocosmia
How to Grow Dahlias
How to Grow Datura - The Angels Trumpet
How to Grow Echium Wildpretii
How to Grow Echium from Seed
HOW TO GROW THE HARDY CRINUM FROM SEED
HOW TO GROW THE HIMALAYAN BLUE POPPY
HOW TO GROW GIANT SUNFLOWERS
HOW TO GROW THE STRAWBERRY TREE - Arbutus unedo
How to Grow the Strawberry Tree from Seed
The Hooker's Lips Plant
How to Grow Cordyline australis
How to Grow Painted Ferns
How to Grow Lavender
How to Grow Lavender from Seed
How to Grow Lobelia tupa
How to Grow Lobelia tupa from Seed
How to Grow the Mexican Sunflower form Seed
How to Grow Monkshood - Aconitum napellus
How to Grow the Red Hot Poker
How to Grow Red Hot Poker from Seed
How to Grow the Sago Palm from Seed
How to Grow Schitzostylis
How to Grow Tree Ferns
HOW TO OVER-WINTER DAHLIAS
How to Over-Winter Dahlia Tubers
How to Grow Hibiscus
How to Plant and Grow Dahlias
How to Propagate Bamboo?
How to Propagate Dahlias
How to Prune Lavender?
How to Prune Roses
Japanese Flowering Cherries - Prunus species
MONKSHOOD - Aconitum napellus
Paeony lactiflora 'Bowl of Beauty'
The Devil's Hand Tree - Chiranthodendron pentadactylon
The Dragon Blood Tree
The Giant Wake Robin - Trillium chloropetalum
The Hardy Begonia - Begonia grandis
The History of the Dahlia
HOOKER'S LIPS PLANT - Psychotria elata
THE MIMOSA TREE - Acacia dealbata
The Oriental Poppy
THE HIMALAYAN MINT - Colquhounia coccinea
THE SEA HOLLY - Eryngium × Oliverianum
THE STRAWBERRY TREE - Arbutus unedo
The Tree peony -Paeony suffruticosa
The Trumpet Vine
What is Bamboo?
What is Lavender?
What is Lobelia?
The Monkey Puzzle Tree - Araucaria araucana
The Wollemi Pine
White Bird of Paradise
Why has my Lavender turned Woody?
Why is my Tree Fern Dead?