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Anybody growing tree dahlias in Sacramento?

Angela Pratt
December 28, 2005

Has anyone in greater Sacramento had any luck with tree dahlias (Dahlia imperialis)? I'd love to give them a try but have never seen them in local gardens. On the coast, they're blooming their big, beautiful pink heads off right now... but Sac? Can it be done? I'm willing to pamper.


Comments (10)

  • calistoga_al ca 15 usda 9

    Mine has been here for 10 years in Calistoga, In Sac they will do about the same. The first frost will take them to the ground but they will come back from the roots. Mine has several blooming stems most are over 20 feet. Partial shade rich soil and plenty of water and NO wind if that is possible. This year the bloom was great and they were spared by thw wind. So far we have not had a frost hard enough to take them down, Al

  • Angela Pratt

    Thanks, Al. Sounds promising. Calistoga gets pretty toasty in the summer, right? That was my main concern. I think I can find a sheltered spot with less wind and more frost protection. Thanks for your help. Tree dahlias have been on my mind lately, having seen them in full bloom in Mendocino in November and yesterday in Berkeley. The Chronicle had a profile recently too. They're pretty spectacular!

    Can anybody recommend where to buy the tubers?

  • calistoga_al ca 15 usda 9

    Tree Dahlias are easily started from nodes on a section of the stalk. Cut the stalk 3 or 4 inches each side of a node on a green healthy stalk. Lay the cut piece flat about 2 inches below soil level with the node horizontal. Do you have something to trade for me to send you a couple? Al

  • Angela Pratt

    Hi Al,

    I just e-mailed you re: a possible trade.

  • marilyn_of_tracy

    I would like to try growing tree dahlias in Tracy, south of Sacramento. Does anyone have a source for them somewhere in the Central Valley or the Delta area? My large local nursery, Alden Lane in Livermore, does not seem to be able to get them. Any help is greatly appreciated!


  • Angela Pratt

    Hi Marilyn,

    I ended up trading with a kind fellow gardener for a couple stalk sections, but in my search discovered a few possible good sources:

    California Dahlia Society-- http://www.sfdahlia.org/webresources/Vendors.htm

    Annie's Annuals--
    (her site also lists a beautiful double white form!)

    Here is a link that might be useful: S.F. Chronicle Plant Profile for Dahlia imperialis

  • caflowerluver

    I will be pruning both my double white pompom ones and the single pink soon. Anyone want to trade cuttings for cuttings? Small USPS box cost $4.05 for 1lb. I can get in a 4+ cuttings (depending on size) in that size box.
    Please see my trade list. Thanks.

  • meadowmuffin

    Anyone have any cuttings they want to part with? maybe I have some seeds of something that you want in exchange? I have only just seen the Tree Dahlia, love the double white and pink that I have seen! Or all for that matter. Would also love to try seeds if anyone has had any success getting any...

  • calpat

    Found a source, however the plant was $9.95 but the shipping was $12.95. I think I'll wait on this one!

  • youreit

    Sorry this is off-topic, but I didn't see any way of contacting Meadowmuffin via email. Anyway, I had to laugh when I saw your name on here! That was my CB handle when I was a kid, thanks to my (hilarious? sick?) dad. He didn't tell me what it meant until I was much older....LOL

    We now return to our scheduled programming.


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