Various

Dahlia flowers

Dahlia flowers


Dahlia flowers

The dahlia plant is native to Mexico, is often cultivated in gardens and there are many qualities: decorative, those with large flowers and arranged in rays, those with curled petals, bushy or with small flowers. Dahlias suitable for growing in pots reach a maximum height of fifty centimeters, while those used for borders or other can reach one and a half meters. Dahlia flowers are very ornamental and therefore used to embellish terraces, balconies, but also as cut flowers. They develop together in small or large flower heads on stems of good length and erect, have beautiful and varied colors: red, pink, yellow, orange, purple etc. The flowering period of the dahlia is very long, starting in July and continuing until winter.


Variety

The dahlia has many varieties, below we will illustrate some of them.

Dalia Variabilis: we can find it of dwarf, medium or or large size. The characteristic of this dahlia are its very abundant flowers of various colors, they are large with large lanceolate petals. The flowering period is from spring to the end of autumn.

Dalia Pride of Belgium: This variety features large flowers.

Dahlia Victory Dwarf: This dahlia is small in size, with red, orange, yellow or white flowers. It is very suitable for creating flower beds by combining several colors.

Dalia Sneezy: This variety is very suitable for growing in pots, is small in size and produces flowers in quantities of various colors.

Daila Christine: develops double flowers of medium size.

Daila Sisa: this dahlia is small in size, very ornamental, producing very resistant yellow flowers.

Dalia Imperialis: this variety can reach five meters in height. The flowers have a white-violet color and bloom in the autumn season.

Dalia Excelsa: larger than the previous one, it reaches seven meters in height, has bell-shaped pink-burgundy flowers with very large corollas. The flowers blossomed in October.

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Curiosity

Dahlia flowers are considered very noble, as Marie Antoinette already used them to decorate the various rooms but also allowed their consumption to the most important guests, the petals of this flower were served as an accompaniment to sweets and desserts. As an alternative to classic herbal teas, you can make one using dahlia petals, it will be very relaxing and will have the same effect of chamomile.



Dahlia flowers

Its origins are exotic: it was born in Mexico and was brought to Europe by the Spanish conquistadors around 1600, however, even before reaching its destination, the botanists of the old continent had made it a case study, thanks to the descriptions of the explorers of the time. .

Once it arrived in Europe, the dahlia did not have the role of a flowering plant of embellishment, but attempts were made over and over again to make the tuber an edible ingredient.

Evidently these culinary experiments must not have been very successful, if, to date, the plants and flowers of dahlia are widespread in gardens and floral compositions, and if, even, Dalia has become a female personal name.

This passion for dahlias is due to their beauty and their ease of cultivation: they are plants with majestic and abundant flowering, which require few tricks, which is why they are the favorites of those with a green thumb and, for these characteristics, they are a good start. for gardening newbies.

The flower growers have classified the hybrids of dahlia as Dahlia variabilis, indicating in the name, how multiform and multicolored they can be, that's why, in the language of flowers, dahlia equals the instability of feelings and the volubility of behavior.

Especially in past centuries, receiving a beautiful bouquet of dahlias meant that one was rather moody and fickle in feelings!

Today opting for a composition of dahlias does not have such a strong value, but it is a choice of taste and elegance.


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The dahlia is the emblem of dignity and royalty

The dahlia, in the language of flowers, means dignity, because of the gentle and composed posture, for its flower so perfect, firmly supported by the sturdy stem. This is its main meaning. It is associated with all dahlias, but in particular with the variety created in the second half of the nineteenth century by English gardeners: the Little Dorrit dahlia, named after the protagonist of the homonymous novel by Charles Dickens, a plant that reaches 70 cm in height and produces purplish-red flowers with a diameter of 5.5 cm and single petals.

For the same reason, that is, for its tall and elegant bearing, it means royalty: «Queen dressed in splendor» who «proudly elevates the corolla» defined her Paul Verlaine in one of his poems.


Cultivating the dahlia: the 10 golden rules

Dahlias are beautiful and relatively undemanding in terms of care. In return, they give spectacular blooms throughout the summer and until the first cold. Here is a handbook of the most important tips for growing dahlia.

  1. The dahlia blooms in summer or autumn reviving borders, flower beds, boxes 30 cm deep and 20 cm wide. It is also suitable for growing in isolated groups and growing for cut flowers.
  2. The ground it must be prepared in autumn, working it deeply and incorporating a good organic fertilizer (mature manure or pelleted manure) and a little bone meal. In early spring, surface processing is still carried out, adding a balanced fertilizer.
  3. The plant it takes place between mid-March and mid-May, depending on the climate, when there is no longer any risk of late frosts. The plant holes will have a depth of 10-15 cm. The plants must be spaced according to the variety chosen: for the tallest ones a space of 80-120 cm is left, for the medium ones of 50-80 cm, for the dwarfs of 30-40 cm. The tubers are placed so that the collar is 4-6 cm below the ground level. It is covered with friable earth and bathed in abundance.
  4. THE guardians, 100-120 cm high, are buried at the moment of implantation. As early as July, the accommodation of additional guardians compared to those arranged: some varieties produce flowers even 15 cm in diameter, very double, which are very heavy due to the slender flower stems. Seeing them bent is a real shame, therefore it is necessary to intervene promptly with sturdy supports, well fixed, firmly tying the stem. Also make sure that the entire plant remains erect: a slight slope on one side leads to the removal of the entire head if a strong wind blows or it rains furiously. Also in this case you need tutors on the four sides to "cage" the plant.
  5. When i sprouts they reach a height of 8-10 cm thinned out leaving only the three most vigorous. The operation must be repeated every time new jets appear. When i sprouts they reach 15-20 cm in height they go topped by removing the apex above the last pair of leaves: it favors the formation of well-branched tufts from the base.
  6. There blossoming it is optional: by removing the lateral and axillary buds that form at the bottom, a smaller number of flowers is obtained but larger in size.
  7. During spring and summer until autumn, the plants require a lot water, keeping the soil moist even in depth.
  8. At the same time they also go fertilized with a balanced fertilizer, without exaggerating with nitrogen, which favors leaf development at the expense of flowering, and makes the tubers more sensitive to rot.
  9. Always cut the withered flower heads at the base of the stem that carries them in order to facilitate the opening of the remaining buds. Beware of rains that spoil the flowering, causing the formation of gray mold both on the already open inflorescences, and on the buds. If possible, roll out a sturdy plastic sheet on the plant, fixing it with clothespins to the braces. Remove it as soon as the water runs out, to allow the foliage to dry quickly.
  10. In the cold climate regions, the tubers of dahlia must be withdrawn from the ground: by the end of October, when flowering is complete, the vegetation is cut to 50 cm, and again to 10 cm after ten days. If there are stems that still bear flowers or buds, cut them low and put them in water indoors, still enjoying them as cut flower. Thread a pitchfork in the ground, 10 cm away from the stump, trying to deepen it for at least 15-20 cm vertically then rotate it upwards so as to lift the clod of earth where presumably the tuber is placed, without however hurting it with the tips. With the other hand, grab the tuft at the base and pull, while with the pitchfork continue to force upwards. Shake the head with the tuber to free it as much as possible from the earth, then also helping with your hands. Cut off the aerial part at 10 cm and place the tuber in a basket. In a well-ventilated cellar or warehouse arrange the tubers in wooden crates, in a single layer and well spaced to dry. After 10-15 days you can remove the residual vegetation, clean the roots from the remaining earth by rubbing them with a soft bristle brush, and store them in wooden boxes lined with natural straw or dry sand. In the case of wounds or rot, trim the area with a small knife and dust the entire tuber with copper powder, placing it in a separate box from the perfectly healthy ones.


Diseases and parasites

As we have seen, the dahlia particularly fears i water stagnation because they create the ideal conditions for it development of parasites, like the aphids. Small pest larvae usually dwell among the flowers, so be very careful and take a look at your plant from time to time.

The dangers don't end there. Excess humidity in the plant's habitat can also trigger the so-called bad white, namely thepowdery mildew, a disease that is triggered by the presence of some fungi.


Video: How To Grow Dahlias At Home. FULL INFORMATION