United States Edition

Status of overwintered dahlia tubers

Wednesday, 28 Apr 10 Cloudy 9°C / 48°F

I didn’t check my tubers as vigorously as I should have over the winter. Loss appears to be about 15%, which isn’t much worse than previous years considering that my climate control options are more limited now than they were in the past.

This year, I used two different packing media: vermiculite and white shavings. The tubers packed in vermiculite did considerably worse, but whether that has to do with the medium or my own thrift of its use, I’m not sure. In both the vermiculite- and shavings-packed bags, the tubers rotted where they had direct contact with the plastic bags.

Next year, I will go 100% shavings because they’re cheaper and can be recycled as a nice brown for the compost pile. Also, they seemed to retain just the right amount of moisture.

I skipped using sulfur dust this year and have no regrets. It’s toxic for me and the environment, and I don’t see that my tubers suffered at all for its absence. They always get a bleach-water dunking to kill random pathogens anyway. Insufficient packing and direct contact with plastic were the ONLY contributing factors to loss, as far as I can tell.

I’m going to have a lot of spare tubers. Haven’t figured out what to do with them, yet.


1) Tubers right after washing and trimming back in the fall.
2) Tubers packed in wood shavings.
3) I labeled my last batch of bags with pictures of the tubers and a corresponding number. This worked really well for me.
4) Tuber packed in vermiculite. This particular one survived well.
5) Vassio Meggos pot roots. Unfortunately, this clump was packed in vermiculite and sustained major damage in storage.


This entry is about

Day 0

Dahlia 'Mascot Maya'

Dahlia pinnata


Didn’t pay attention to which clump the tubers were from


  • xan

    xan wrote:

    Oh heavens, I completely forgot about my dahlias! Thank you for the reminder! (Scurries off to basement to put them out where I’ll see them.)

    Posted on 01 May 10 (almost 5 years ago)

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