Dahlia 'Deco' Mixed - Seed
Dahlia seeds need no prior treatment.Sowing
Sow under glass in March and April.
Sow in the garden from the end of April to the end of May.
If sowing indoors, it is easiest to use a propagator on the windowsill. Fill pots with a potting compost and plant one seed per pot. Just lay the seed on the top of the soil and do not cover it as the dahlia germinates in the light. Press it carefully in and carefully sprinkle the pots with water. Heat will do the rest. Try and acclimatise the seedlings before planting out - stand them outdoors in the shade for one hour longer each day for five days, after which time they will be ready to pot up. Plant outdoors in the border or flowerbed from mid May - keeping them in pots if also fine. Hold growth back when it is too cold outdoors by standing the seedlings in a cooler spot with lots of light.
Sow outdoors, preferably in full sun from the end of April to the end of May. Loosen the soil with a fork to at least 30 cm deep. Draw a furrow if you want them in a row and plant one seed every 20 cm. Label each row and ensure so soil over the seeds as they need light to germinate. Press the seeds carefully down and sprinkle lightly with water. Extra rows should be 30 cm apart. The resulting plants can be moved to where you want them after 4-6 weeks.
Seedlings are sensitive to frost so cover with garden fleece if frost is forecast.
The seeds will germinate in 7-21 days.
The dahlia is a perennial that grows to 30-40 cm tall.Use
The flowers are edible and you can find recipes on the Internet for original recipes (vinegar, jam etc.).
Dahlias are great in the vase and last a long time in water. Although this variety has a short stem they will also look great in lovely summer bouquets.
Water extra during dry periods, keep the bed free of weeds and your dahlia will thrive. Dahlia's are very undemanding but do not like their 'feet' wet. They will also thrive in poor soil. Feed fortnightly with fertiliser for flowering plants. The plant will flower from June through to the Autumn. Dead head regularly to stimulate new budding.
Dahlias are tuber forming plants that can get through the winter if you dig them up and store them frost-free in a box of damp leaf mould or turf.
Dahlias are grown mostly for their showy flowers but it is interesting to know that the flowers are edible. Pick them while the plant is still growing.
Just snip the flowers off with scissors, a sharp knife of pinch them off between thumb and forefinger.