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About Our Dahlia Tuber Sale

  • Our 2024 dahlia tuber sale will launch Saturday March 2nd at 10:00 am.

  • We have a new host for our online shop for the tuber sale. Please take a moment to familiarise yourself with it HERE. You can set up an account ahead of time with your payment info and shipping address if you'd like.

  • Dahlia tubers are for pick up only, we do not ship. See below for pick up details.

  • Just a reminder that this is a pre-sale. We check our tubers multiple times in storage and have built in a reasonable buffer to account for any losses, but it is possible for a variety to become unavailable after it is sold. In this case we'll offer you a refund or substitute. Storing dormant living plant material is tricky business!

  • If you would like an item that becomes sold out, please send through an email and you will be put on a waitlist for it in case we have extras. No promises, but it's not impossible! We will be in touch in late April if we do have them for you.

  • Yes! We can combine orders if you place more than one order, just shoot through an email.

  • If you add an item to your shopping cart, it isn't yours until you check out. It's possible for items to become unavailable while you're shopping. Unfortunately that's the way most e-commerce systems works and it's not something we can change

  • Florist Customers Only: If you have an account to shop online with us, you may need to flip from the florist's Fresh Sheet price list to the Online Shop price list in the top right hand corner of the shop page to access the dahlia tuber sale.

How to Get Your Tubers
We do not offer shipping. Your order can be picked up from the Trout Lake Farmer's Market in Vancouver or from the farm on Westham Island between April 27th and May 11th on Saturdays. If the date selected for you at checkout doesn't work for you, please leave a note at checkout with your preferred Saturday date. If you don't pick up your tubers between these dates or get in touch with us, they will be donated to community members on your behalf.

About Dahlias
We have been growing dahlias since well before the first season of River and Sea Flowers. These blooms come in a huge diversity of colours, shapes and sizes. They produce stem after stem of beautiful blooms from early August till first frost.

Dahlias grow from tubers, a potato-like lump that puts out a growing eye from near where they were connected to the original stem. Each tuber will multiply over the growing season so that when you dig up your plant in the fall and divide it you will have more to plant next year. You can learn more about growing dahlias below.

We would love to see your dahlias blooming, tag them on social media with #riverandseadahlias.

Growing Guide

Tips on growing your dahlias

Dahlias can be planted in the spring when the soil has warmed and once the threat of frost has passed, usually late April in our area. You can plant them right until early June. Choose a location in full sun with good drainage and prepare your planting bed by loosening the soil. Incorporate some good quality compost. Dig a hole for your tuber so that it will be covered by about 4-6" of soil. Plant your tuber horizontally and with the eyes (growing points) facing up to the surface. If you don't see obvious eyes yet, don't worry! They can take a little while to wake up. Cover with loose soil. We plant our dahlias 12-16" apart.

Plant Care
Different varieties can grow to be different sizes so expect your plant to be between 2'-5' tall. Most will require some support, either with a bamboo cane or a tomato cage. Don't water your tubers until they emerge from the soil. Over watering will cause your tubers to rot. Young plants don't need a lot of water but once they are well established they can be quite thirsty. Water well and deeply 1-2 times a week. Avoid getting the foliage wet. Cut your plants back by half when they are about 12" high. This encourages them to branch, which will give you more flowers as well as keeping the stalks from becoming too top heavy.

There is no need to pick your flowers if you would prefer to enjoy them in your garden. Should you wish to bring them inside or share them with others, start with clean sharp snips and a clean bucket of fresh water. Cut the stem at least 12" long just above a pair of leaves. New shoots will emerge from here to give you even more flowers. Even if you do not pick your flowers, remove spent flowers regularly to encourage your plant to continue to flower.

Digging Dahlias
In the fall, after a killing frost, the foliage and flowers will turn black. Cut the plants back to about 6" above the soil and wait one to two weeks before digging them so that the skins of the tubers can set. Using a digging fork, loosen the soil about 12" from the stalk. Carefully lift the clump from the soil by the stalk taking care not to break the tubers from the main stalk, gently brush away soil. If the soil is heavy and hard to remove you can wash it off but don't use high water pressure as you may damage the skins of the tubers.

Storing Tubers
Trim back the stalk to remove green succulent portion.Leave your tubers in a warm spot to dry for a few days.Pack the tuber clump into a bin or box containing a loose material such as wood shavings, vermiculite or sawdust. Store unsealed in a cool place that will remain above freezing. Check your tubers regularly to make sure that they are not shrivelling (low humidity) or rotting (high humidity). Remove any rotting tubers immediately.

Dividing Tubers
Tubers can be divided in either fall or spring, though it is usually easier to do in the spring. Using a sharp utility knife or pruners separate tubers from the main stalk making sure to keep a portion of the main stalk attached to the tuber. This is where the eyes develop. Discard any tubers with broken necks or that don't have a part of the main stalk. Look for raised bumps where the tubers meet the stalk as these are eyes, the growing points for the next season's stems. Sometimes eyes are very difficult to see or are even not apparent until the tuber has "woken up". If you are having difficulty seeing the eyes bring them into a warmer place and they will emerge more quickly.

We have a video recap on Instagram here with some tips as well. There are many resources online. Google for photos or look up a YouTube video. There isn't only one way to do it and it's okay to make mistakes as you learn how to grow dahlias!

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