Thanks to the work of growers, dahlias will survive Texas' heat

Published on Wednesday, 18 September 2013 22:55 - Written by By Dee Bishop In Our Garden

Dahlias grow and bloom beautifully in areas with cool summers.

That would normally leave us out, but thanks to many years of crossing different types of dahlias, growers have come up with some that will even take Texas heat.

We have some in the garden that bloom from mid-summer into fall, and aren’t they pretty? The dark — nearly black — foliage is a knockout in its own right, then come the lovely yellow-orange-tinged blooms and it’s a scene stealer.

Dahlias need well-prepared beds enriched with a lot of compost so they drain well but stay slightly damp. These grow between 3 and 4 feet tall. You can clip them back occasionally to keep them shorter if need be. They just cover themselves with blooms.

Foliage will go down with a freeze. But never fear, they will emerge in late spring when the ground has warmed well. We often think we have lost them, because we get impatient, but they come up once the soil and air are warm.

Other colors are available and new varieties are coming on the market every year; so look for these heat-loving dahlias that will even grow in Texas.