Dahlias belong to the composite family (Asteraceae) and have many species.
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- Dahlias are edible, both leaf and tuber. The taste is somewhat anise-like.
Dahlias belong to the composite family (Asteraceae) and have many species. The origin of today’s dahlia is in Mexico where the original dahlia, a tall perennial, was cultivated for its edible fleshy roots. Today’s dahlias are hybrids. There are many varieties: from single flowers to orchid-like. Flowering time is from July to November or until the first night frost.
The dahlia is a frost-prone tuberous plant that should be dug up and stored in late fall. Preferably in a cool (+5°C), frost-free dry room. Not all dahlias are equally sensitive to frost.
Do not remove the tubers from the ground immediately in autumn: the dahlia still draws nutrition from the above-ground green parts. Once the leaves start to wither, the tubers can be taken out of the ground.
The overwintered tubers can be planted again after mid-May when the risk of night frost has decreased. When planting, make sure the dried out main stem is at the top. Planting depth is only ten centimeters. Dahlias like a nutritious, not too wet soil in a somewhat sheltered spot.
Multiply dahlias by tearing the tubers and planting them. Dahlias like to be in the sun and water regularly.
Fungi & diseases
Brown spots appear on the leaves, the spots spread and grey fluffy mold. Buds and leaves dry out: Gray mold (Botrytis).
Yellow-green spots appear on the leaves, multiply and turn gray: Entyloma.
Plant wilts and leaves yellow. White (sometimes pink or brown) mold develops on stem and tendrils: Fusarium wilt (Fusarium oxysporum) or Verticillium wilt Verticillium spp).
Plants wilt, leaves die and brown or black spots appear on roots: Black scurf and stem canker (Rhizoctonia).
Light green to yellowish streaks appear on the leaves: Mosaic virus.