Dahlia Season: Plant, Support, Irrigate & Groom forum: Disbudding advice

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Jul 23, 2022 8:02 AM CST
Name: Julia
NW Indiana
Hi, I was hoping for some disbudding advice/feedback.

One of my new varieties (KA Blood Orange) seems to be tending towards short stems even after disbudding. I usually disbud at the “extra” leaf just below the main bud, and then at the first leaf node down. But on Blood Orange, I’m still just getting 6” stems or so. Do you guys think it would be helpful for me to disbud (i guess it’s really removing laterals) a second node down? Or does that not really help to lengthen stems?
Jul 23, 2022 9:50 AM CST
Name: Steve
San Diego
Commercial cut flower grower
Julia, for cut flower production, I disbud most varieties down 2 or 3 nodes to get the desired 18" stems. The main reason I disbud is to increase the bloom size and start the growth on the lower laterals so the next flush of blooms is sooner. (i.e., by the time I cut the disbudded bloom the laterals below my cut will already be forming buds).

The first bloom on some varieties will have very short stems and/or "bury" the fiest bloom in the foliage. The laterals on these varieties usually produce longer stems for the second flush. These varieties are best "topped" when they are about a foot tall to encourage laterals.

If a plant is producing extremely short stems that are not typical for that variety, watch for signs of virus.

If you are growing for competition, my disbudding advice might not apply. Smiling

Jul 23, 2022 7:12 PM CST
Name: Julia
NW Indiana
Thanks For the advice Steve! I’ll give it a try!

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