I grew dahlias
last summer for the first time, and was quite surprised to see how
big the clump of bulbs had grown under the soil when I dug them up
last fall. I just dug the whole clump up and stuck it in a box of
shredded paper to store inside over the winter. Can I break that up
into smaller pieces so I can plant dahlias in more places?
A. Dahlias are tender,
summer-flowering bulbs that are not winter hardy in the greater
Pittsburgh area. They must be lifted in fall and stored indoors
for the winter, then replanted out in late spring. Botanically
speaking, dahlias are tuberous roots rather than true bulbs.
growth arises from buds or “eyes” found at the base of the dried
out, dead stems where they attach to those swollen roots. It is
critical to divide dahlias so that every root piece is attached
to a piece of stem. Loose pieces of tuberous root that are not
attached to a stem lack buds and will never grow.
Dahlias in a hanging basket
Cover Crops for Winter