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One of the gorgeous autumn flowers of the Astrov family is dahlias. Growing annual dahlias is easy, the main thing is to follow all the rules and recommendations.
- Description and plant varieties
- How to plant dahlias correctly
- Care advice
Description and plant varieties
Dahlias belong to the Astrov family. These flowers do not tolerate frost, so they are grown as annuals. Dahlias have inflorescences in the form of baskets. In the central part of the inflorescence there are tubular flowers with a pistil and a stamen, in which capsules of seeds are formed. Depending on the type of dahlia, they can be tall or low. Inflorescences can be double, semi-double, feather-shaped, collar, etc. Their size is about 10 cm in diameter.
Popular varieties of annual dahlias include:
- Variety "Merry guys". It is a dwarf variety and is grown primarily to decorate flower beds. The height of the bushes does not exceed 70 cm. Flowers can be white, pink, red, lilac and other shades.
- Variety "Piccollo". The plant reaches a height of 50 cm. It is grown in flowerpots and pots. Can be planted in small flower beds.
- Variety "Dandy". This variety is distinguished by original brightly colored flowers. The inflorescences reach 6-8 cm in diameter.
- Variety "Mignon". The height of the plant is 40-50 cm. It is used to decorate flower beds, balconies.
- Variety "Figaro". The plant does not exceed 30 cm in height. The inflorescences are terry or semi-double, of various bright colors.
You can plant various varieties of dahlias at their summer cottage or in the flower beds of a country house. These flowers always attract attention with their bright, beautiful colors.
How to plant dahlias correctly
Dahlias can be grown in two ways: through seedlings and seeds. When grown through seedlings, flowering can be expected in June. For the planting mixture, it is better to use peat, sand, perlite. It is important to make sure to make drainage holes in the containers. Before planting, you can soak the seeds overnight in warm water with the addition of aloe juice in a 2: 1 ratio.
Sow seeds in prepared boxes, and then sprinkle with soil on top and spray from a spray bottle. The first shoots will appear a week after sowing the seeds.
It is not recommended to immediately remove the shelter. This should be done gradually. After the seedlings grow up, you can pick. During transplantation of seedlings, it is necessary to deepen the plants to the lower leaves. After a while, you can apply complex fertilizer. Planting seedlings in open ground is carried out in May. It is recommended to cover the seedlings with any covering material, then you can not be afraid for the survival of the plants.
The place for planting should be sunny. It is recommended to plant on neutral or slightly acidic soil. The soil must be mixed with humus and a little sand added to it. The soil must be hardened before planting seedlings. To do this, in sunny weather, you should take the pot with seedlings outside for 5 minutes, then gradually increase the time.
Video about planting seeds of annual dahlias:
It is recommended to water the seedlings 2 hours before planting in open ground. Next, make depressions, add compost and ash, mix fertilizer and plant seedlings. Low-growing varieties are planted at a distance of 20-30 cm from each other, medium-sized ones - 50 cm, and tall ones - 60-70 cm. After planting, water the seedlings, and mulch the soil around the plant.
If the seeds are sown in open ground, then flowering can only be expected by August. It is advisable to carry out this manipulation after spring frosts.
Dahlia is a heat-loving, drought-resistant crop. Watering the flower should be moderate, as it does not like an excess of moisture in the soil. Watering outdoors should be watered once a week, even less often in rainy weather. If the summer is hot, then they moisten the soil more often only in the morning or in the evening. Dahlias, like other flowers, need additional feeding. You can alternate organic and mineral fertilizers every 2 weeks.
During flowering, potash or phosphorus fertilizer must be applied: for 8 bushes, you will need 30 g of fertilizer per 10 liters of water. A prerequisite for caring for dahlias is weeding the plants. Weeds should be removed in a timely manner, the soil should be loosened, and the flowers should be spud. All these measures contribute to better air flow, maintain moisture, and also prevent the development of diseases.
In order for the dahlia to bloom longer, it is necessary to cut off the faded inflorescences in a timely manner. With the beginning of the first frost, it is recommended to cover the plants with foil. This way you can extend flowering by 2-3 weeks. During the growth period of the plant, the lateral lower shoots should be removed. Before bud formation begins, pinching is carried out.
After the dahlia has bloomed, you can collect the seeds. To do this, carefully cut a box of seeds from dried and faded plants. When ripe, the achene will turn dark beige in the shape of a cone. Next, carefully open the ripe seeds, dry and pack in paper bags. Store them in a cool dry place.
Of the diseases, dahlias are most often exposed to viral mosaic and ring spot. All affected plants should be removed, and the soil should be treated with an insecticidal solution. In the fall, you should remove the bushes and prepare the soil for planting dahlias next year. Compost and humus must be added to the soil in equal amounts. If you take care of the plants correctly, then dahlias will delight you with their bright colors for a long time.