Dahlia flowers are bright ornamental plants. This is a subspecies of Asteraceae. It grows lush, beautiful bush. The flower got its attractive name in honor of naturalist George. Dahlias are often called "flowers of the departing summer." Plant blooms in late fall. It blooms for three months.
Flowers can have a wide variety of options. The largest buds can reach 25 centimeters, and small ones less than 10 centimeters. Plant growth depends on how they will be looked after (watering, feeding, etc.). Beautifully flowering perennial excellently overcrowded on the plot.
Gardeners share dahlias annual and perennial. Mostly all dahlias are classified into the following types:
- Simple or single row. This species is characterized by the presence of one row of flowers. They are not terry. Their diameter does not exceed 10 centimeters. The height of the flower does not reach 60 centimeters.
- Anemone like. Have exquisite, slightly terry flowers. The number of rows - from one to several pieces. With an inflorescence diameter of 10 centimeters, the stem height is 70 centimeters.
- Collar. This species is notable for a difficult and beautiful shape of flowers. The number of rows is one.
- Peony. The number of rows varies from one to several pieces. In the central part there is a small “pad” of a yellowish shade.
- Decorative. This is the largest class of plant data. Terry inflorescences, large size. Decorative dahlia has inflorescences up to 25 centimeters.
- Globular. This species boasts a bright and abundant flowering. Terry inflorescence has an attractive lush spherical shape. The diameter of the flower is 10-15 centimeters.
- Pompon. According to external characteristics it is difficult to distinguish them from spherical. The only significant difference is the small size of flowers (5 cm). In height, the plant can reach 150 centimeters.
- Semi-Aktus Terry flowers with a diameter of up to 25 centimeters are characterized by the presence of wider petals on the edge. Petals are folded to its length.
- Lotus. This is a very showy variety of dahlia. She fell in love with a large number of florists with attractive terry flowers with a diameter of up to 25 centimeters.
- Mixed. This species is characterized by the presence of a completely different form of inflorescences. It is quite rare.
Depending on the height of the bush, emit dwarf, stunted, medium-tall and tall plants. In addition, there are perennial giant dahlias. They are planted mainly close to the supports.
Features of planting and care
All varieties of dahlias are unpretentious. You can grow them yourself, on your own. However, growing dahlias requires compliance with certain rules. How to grow dahlias? Plants are planted with seedlings or tubers. If you choose a seedling method, then you need to plant a plant in mid-May. It is important not to forget while covering small flowers with plastic wrap.
When grown tubers, flowers are planted in early May. Dahlia garden love when the soil is fertile. This sun-loving plant should not be planted in the shade. There it will not actively grow. Caring for dahlias will not cause additional difficulties. These flowers need to be watered often. Especially in dry weather. Watering should be abundant, but not frequent. As weeds germinate, the flower must be weeded. Feeding implies the use of mullein, superphosphates, nitrogen. With proper care, the plant begins to bloom in July. It will delight with its spectacular colors until frost.
Dahlias in the country have their pests (caterpillars, ticks, bugs). Particularly attractive for pests are young shoots. At the first appearance of insects, the shoots of dahlias should be processed using a decoction based on wormwood and celandine. The broth can be changed to a soap solution. Remember that spotted or mosaic wilting is not treated.
Dahlias can boast the presence of medicinal properties. For this reason, they can be attributed to medicinal plants. The flower contains substances that help the human body get rid of toxins, heavy metals. Taking a decoction prepared on the basis of flowers and leaves, it is possible to normalize the work of the thyroid and pancreas. For medicinal purposes, mainly flowers are used, which have small buds. Dahlias are very useful for those who suffer from cardiovascular diseases.
Dahlias are widely used in cooking. In this area, the plant is used much less frequently than others. Petals are used in the preparation of salads and a variety of dishes. They give food a certain piquancy. In Mexican cuisine are widely used tubers and inflorescences for the preparation of a variety of dishes. Drink is made from dahlia tubers. It is used instead of the usual tea or coffee. To improve the taste of this original drink consumed with milk or cream. Dahlia flowers and tubers are low in calories. This plant can be an excellent solution for the organization of diet.
How to care for dahlias in winter? With the onset of severe frosts, dahlia tubers must be dug out. This event, as a rule, in the middle zone of our country is carried out in late September and early October. Digging is required in dry weather. This must be done so that the tubers have time to dry. 5-6 days before digging from the bush, it is necessary to carefully remove all the leaves and stems. They should be covered with aluminum foil. The digging up of tubers is carried out from all sides (30 centimeters). The pitchfork needs to be gently slipped under a long root system. Then, they should be pushed out. After digging the tuber must be shaken off the ground. Then it is washed and always dried.