a mediateam website

See a sample issue of The Irish Garden!

Gracedieu Lass's Journal

Gracedieu Lass's Journal

Last Post 32 days 2 hours ago

Is It Worth It.

30 October 2017 13:22:05

Click to zoom

Click to zoom

Click to zoom

After spending this morning lifting dahlias I am wondering if it is worth it. I have to say it is not my favourite job with all the muck and water that is involved in the task. Paddy had a hard job lifting the tubers as some of them are very large and the ground now is sticky. After giving them a wash we now have them drying off in the garage and will pack them away in peat, hopefully next week. 

The garden looks dreadful now with most herbaceous plants waiting to be cleared away.  This year the autumn colour has been cut short with the storms of the last few weeks but we did manage to clear lots of leaves with the help of the lawnmower. It was a fast and furious fall of leaves. 

During the hurricane we had a Garrya elliptica 'James Roof', a twenty five year old plant, toppled over, but otherwise very little damage in the garden. Weeds are flourishing in the mild weather, so plenty of work to keep us busy and I still have tulips to plant into containers. The forecast for the coming week seems to be good for gardening, so hoping to continue with the clearing up before winter bites.

Please login to write a comment or click here to register

Michele Maria Michele Maria 30 October 2017 13:56:00

I'm with you wondering if it is worth it....lifting tubers. Yours look very clean and dry not to mention named! I never thought of washing them. We get a lot of frost here so I will lift the few that I have for fear of losing them.

PCON PCON 30 October 2017 17:00:14

I have not lifted them for several years, Mary, and it is probably milder in Waterford than Dublin. Might have lost one or two, but mostly fine! and they are easy enoug to replace. Of course if we get an extra cold Winter like 2010/11, they might suffer. I am willing to take the chance, and expect to get away with it. I have saved some seed this year, but have never grown dahlias from seed before.

Gracedieu Lass Gracedieu Lass 30 October 2017 17:41:59

Peter, it is the wet soil here over the winter that kills them. I have only grown species from seed, but I know other gardeners who have had great success with cultivars.

DecfromTipp DecfromTipp 30 October 2017 18:27:51

There’s a now abandoned garden less than three miles from me . The Dahlia display is just wonderful each year without any lifting or protection or feeding whatsoever . The former owent now aged 101 lives in a local nursing home and has her Dahlias still going to the local Church . Yes I think it’s just too much unnecessary work 

Dick Dick 30 October 2017 23:00:20

Great display of Dahlias, Mary. You ask is it worth lifting them. I remember some years ago I was lifting them every year. Somebody told me not to bother that they would be safe. I had a large number of tubers at the time. I decided to leave them. Then the temperature dropped and they were all killed as a result. I think it was 2010. You remember the snow that lasted about 3 weeks in December.

Jackie Jackie 31 October 2017 06:26:51

Mary I’ve lifted mine each year and trying to find somewhere to store them is now my problem what with bringing other plants inside. So I’ve decided not to this year. One of my sisters who has some Dahlia but not as big into gardening as me, leaves hers every year and has a magnificent display!!  She’s about 10 minutes away from me. if needs been I will replace them!! ;) Mind you that’s a huge amount you have there. ! 

Jacinta D Jacinta D 31 October 2017 09:27:21

My Dahlias are all in planters, except for my seed-grown one which has never been lifted since sowing it. The others go into the glasshouse in their planters. I don't dry off any of them. 

That's some amount of tubers you have there, Mary.

Gracedieu Lass Gracedieu Lass 31 October 2017 10:41:19

That is a good idea Jacinta for any it pots. I have very wet soil during the winter and don't have the money to buy gravel to incorporate into the soil as it is a big area. On well drained soils I think that they do okay unless hit by the weather we got in 2010/11.

Declan, I think some old varieties seem less likely to rot. I leave out Dahlia 'My Love' and a pink one which was given to me years ago. Dahlia 'War of the Roses you could not kill. I sometime think that it maybe the way that plants are now reproduced that cause them to be less tolerant of weather conditions. However, for now they are in, with the two doors of the garage open wide to dry them off.

Scrubber Scrubber 01 November 2017 20:55:10

I used have dahlias and dried them and labelled them and then lost them! Yours look so impressive ,all tidied up and that! I only have one and it may be war of the roses red and white but it comes through every winter without  any care. It was such a consolation to hear you say 'the garden looks dreadful now' as that is a fairly exact description of mine! But give me the winter months and we'll be back!!!

TheH (Hazel) TheH (Hazel) 02 November 2017 13:55:39

I am so impressed with all the carefully labellex tubers but like some of the others I decided a coiple of years ago that life was too short to lift my dahlias. I just celebrate any that come through!




LindaB LindaB 02 November 2017 14:52:33

I have decided to leave mine in this year, I think they will only survive if it is not too wet or too cold, so the odds are against them but I have not had success lifting them either, I think I don't look after them well enough, not enough hours in my day!

Your garden ALWAYS looks well no matter what the season, you put me to shame. 

PCON PCON 02 November 2017 16:48:42

If I lived in Co Laois, I think I would lift them, Hazel. Pretty sure Linda will be O.K in Gorey.


Garden.ie Members

Not a member yet?
Join now to:

Join Now

Existing Members

Forgotten password


Showing 6 of 103
Friends of Gracedieu Lass
view all friends >

Garden.ie CLUB

Join Ireland's first online garden club! Share pictures of your garden, make new friends and chat with other gardeners. It's simple to join and free! Register Here

Featured Members


Thousands of gardening facts at your finger tips:

Ask Gerry

Gerry DalyTry our unique advice service from editor Gerry Daly. Got a question right now? Search here to see if it has been answered already:

a mediateam website

©2018 Garden.ie. Mediateam Ltd, Media House, South County Business Park, Leopardstown, Dublin 18.

Tel (+353 1) 2947777 Email info@garden.ie

Website Design by KCO.ie