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The colourful dahlia is a must-have in your picking garden. With their different shapes, colours and flowering heights, dahlias generate a real colour explosion. The best-known variety is perhaps the pale pink ‘CafĂ© au Lait’ dahlia. But if you really want to make colours pop, there are plenty of special dahlias to be found, from bright yellow to deep dark purple. Dahlia, the lively queen of the picking garden!

Dahlias in your picking garden

Plant your dahlia bulbs in spring, once the risk of frost has passed. The earlier you plant dahlias, the earlier you will be able to pick them. Plant dahlias at around 50 cm planting distance in your garden. In summer, your patience will be richly rewarded with radiant dahlias in your own picking garden!

They are also suitable for planting in pots. Grow them indoors if you want to have flowers even earlier in the season. This is called forcing bulbs. Plant the dahlias in a pot in February or March and give them a light spot in a greenhouse. Once the risk of frost has passed, you can move the potted dahlias outside or plant them in the picking garden. The appearance of the first flower buds marks the start of the fun part: picking the dahlias! Combine your dahlias with other flowers or foliage from your garden for a colour explosion in your picking bouquet.

Creating a picking garden

Why not create a picking garden of your own? We all want a colourful blanket of flowers in our own garden! Too good to be true? Not really. You only need a small plot in the garden or in an existing border to plant, care for and ultimately pick the most beautiful flowers! If you don’t have a garden, you can still do much more than you think with pots and containers.
Once you have chosen a sheltered and sunny spot for your picking flowers, it is time to choose your flower varieties. Of course, Dahlias are indispensable in your picking garden. Combine them with other picking flowers like peonies, Verbena and gypsophilia.

Tips and tricks for your picking garden:

  1. Pick flowers early in the day: harvesting picking flowers is best done in the morning. Make sure your knife is clean. Leave your flowers to rest in a bucket filled with water for a few hours before putting your bouquet together.
  2. Don’t pick too many flowers at the same time: decide in advance how much you need and cut only those flowers. After all, you don’t want to waste your beautiful blooms!
  3. To supplement your picking flowers: for additional greenery, take a look around the garden. You may have beautiful shrubs or ornamental grasses in the garden from which you can pick some additional foliage to combine in the picking bouquet.
  4. In the vase: if you want to create a spectacular result, choose a vase in a colour that combines nicely with your picking flowers.
  5. Flowers will last longer in a clean vase. Cleaning your vase with a little natural vinegar helps remove any lingering bacteria in the vase.
  6. Picking stimulates the production of new dahlia blooms. In this way, you can continue to pick flowers for longer!

Do you want to find out more about summer bulbs? Then visit

To view Dahlias at Van Meuwen click here

All images copyright iBulb

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