Chores before another spring snow includes potting dahlias

Today is supposed to be 70+ degrees, a perfect time to get some seeds sown and tender perennials potted up to wait for the last frost. The new normal for spring in Colorado includes large swings in temps from 70 to 20 and back again. Only the hardiest plants can take frost on their new growth. Spring bulbs like daffodils, tulip and hyacinth are fine. As are the catmint and linum that make an early appearance in the Colorado front range garden. But a shorter growing season requires some plants be started indoors to be sure they have enough time to fruit or flower.

Prepping tender plants indoors

  • Pot up jalapenos, tomatoes, kale and zinnias that are now outgrowing their small peat pots x
  • Soak another set of Roma tomatoes x
  • Get jiffy pellet refills x
  • Pot up coleus clippings 2x
  • Start more beets. In water bath
  • Start nicotiana for summer pots.
  • Pot up Dahlias

A first for Dahlias

This will be my first go at growing Dahlia from tubers. After seeing a neighbor’s spectacular dahlia last summer, I knew I needed to try. Even better are Butchart Garden’s dahlia displays, wow.

2014 – Butchart Gardens Dahlia Explosion. The darker red in the top right of the frame may be ‘Arabian night’ and the yellow in the lower right a flower simialr to ‘Sunshine’

Dahlias are native to Mexico and South America. Being sub-tropical they must be lifted in fall and stored in a cool spot that doesn’t freeze over winter. Below are the dahlias purchased.

01337DINNER PLATE DAHLIA LILAC – 5 plants Upto 48″ tall, and a 6 – 8″ purple flowers on single stems. Full sun.
05925LARGE DECORATIVE DAHLIA ‘ARABIAN NIGHT’-  5 plants blackish-red flowers growing to 44″. Full sun. This is one I am quite looking forward to, shown below, its a beaut!
01388DARK LEAFED DAHLIA ‘SUNSHINE’ – 5 plants 2-3″ golden yellow blooms with open orange centers for pollinators. Dark foliage has a tinge of burgundy. 28″ high. Full sun

Dark red Dahlia

Before the day is out –

  • Put away greenhouse in anticipation of wind
  • Widen the holes for the June grass
  • Start more of the natives anemone and figwort
  • Plant lathyrus odoratus next to the tree stump – done 4 seeds (note seeds are poisonous)

While I get to work, enjoy more of the brilliant displays of Butchart.

More Butchart dahlias



An amateur gardener who loves to watch the garden grow.