2 Materials
15 Minutes

Growing dahlias indoors does not have to be difficult. The way I will be showing you has worked extremely well for me and I use the method every year. This method is also excellent if you have a lot of tubers and little space for growing dahlias indoors.

What you will be doing is replicating the environment they come from in the higher altitudes of Mexico in order to wake them up. This will allow you to get a head start if Spring is coming a little later in your zone. Let’s get into the process!

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If you have the right temperature, natural light and humidity level, you can grow dahlias all year round. When living in colder climates, it will be more difficult due to fireplaces and heating systems being on, decreasing the humidity in the home. It is also an issue of sunlight, having shorter days in the fall and winter.

Growing your dahlias in a pot outdoors is great, making it so much easier to store indoors through the winter.


You do not have to dig out your tubers unless you live in an extremely cold zone or you have had them in the ground for a couple of years. Once they are in the ground for a couple of years, they are ready to be divided and may not give you as many flowers as when they first were planted.


I will be taking you through the process of placing the dahlias on soil to get them started waking up. But first, it is important you take a good look at your dahlia tubers and assess their condition.

Don’t give up on a tuber before assuring that it is still alive. This past winter we had ice storms, snow plus lots of rain; making it impossible to dig out on time my tubers that I wanted to relocate.

My tubers looked great, but extremely large and I knew something was not right.

When I brought the tubers out of storage, they had shrunk so much and unfortunately, many had rotted. I simply discarded the rotted ones when dividing the tubers and kept the rest, even if they looked wrinkled. It worked! I have a huge amount of tubers with eyes and shoots.

Do not give up, dahlias are extremely tough, even when the tubers look fragile. Give it a go!

You want to learn more tips about growing dahlias. Check out my post ‘HELP! MY DAHLIAS ARE NOT BLOOMING! / MY FAVORITES!’ READ HERE!

The tuber looks really bad, but look at the eye!


The materials are simple, but each is important to the success of waking up the dahlia tubers.

  1. Clear storage container
  2. Organic garden bed soil that does not contain any chemicals or fertilizer and it does have good drainage.
  3. Osmocote
  4. Spray bottle
  5. Dahlia Tubers
  6. Heater (Optional if you live in a cold zone)
  7. Plant Tags
  8. Garden Pens

I told you it was simple materials! I love that even more!

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  1. Select a storage container that is clear. Do not use any dark containers because they will not allow light to filtrate. Place your container where it will get indirect lighting. I have mine in front of my sliding doors.

2. Add 2″ or 3″ of soil. Make sure the soil has a little moisture but it is not wet. We will talk later about spraying your dahlias with water.

If you feel the soil is too dry and it will be a problem, you can add vermiculite. I don’t use it any longer and have had a lot of success growing dahlias indoors.

3. Add Osmocote to the soil and mix well. The dahlias are not hungry until they begin to grow. You don’t need to add anymore Osmocote, just sprinkle some on the soil to begin with and it will last the entire growth period, until you take them outside.

Amount will depend on the size of your container. Refer to instructions by manufacturer. I place about 3 scoops on my large containers, you don’t have to be exact, but don’t overdo it either.

4. Place dahlia tubers next to each other laying flat on the soil. Make sure they are touching the soil, but you do not have to bury them. If you have an eye, place the tuber with the eye to the top. Check the dahlia tubers daily to see if any eyes are growing and turn the tuber if needed.

It is very important that the tubers do not touch each other in order to prevent any moisture between them to build up and rot any parts. This allows air flow between each tuber.

If you have a large clump, simply lay it down on the soil as you would on the ground. You do not need to bury the tubers, just make sure hey make contact with the soil in order to grow the roots.

5. Create labels for each tubers, depending on how you lay them out. You can do a row of the same with one label. If you plan to use the labels outdoors later, use a garden pen so it won’t wear off.

6. Spray your tuber in the morning and late afternoon. It is good to keep the moisture level going, but don’t over water. You do not need to water with a water dispenser until the growth is at least 2″.

7. This is an optional step; I add a small heater that I keep at 70 degrees Fahrenheit, since I live in a chilly zone and want to wake up my tubers faster. The warmer temperature will get the tubers to wake up.

Do not place your heater right next to the dahlias, leave a space of a couple of feet or more. The excessive heat can cook your tubers, think of them as potatoes. Be very careful, but the flow of warm air will drastically change the amount of time the tubers will take to wake up. If you live in a warmer zone you don’t need to go through this step. Dahlias love temperatures between 70 to 80 degrees Fahrenheit.

8. You now will have amazing growth on the tubers and healthy roots that will be ready to plant outside! Growing dahlias indoors will provide you with a strong beginning to the season.


Dahlias are like nothing else I grow in my small space garden. Something about these flowers bring so much joy to my heart. Every single tuber that I see an eye picking out, is like a baby to me. I get beyond excited to see them wake up and know that it all started with one tuber.

For the YouTube HOW TO GROW DAHLIAS INDOORS that shows the process. CLICK HERE!

This is the most incredible thing about dahlias, they gift you with so many more! Growing dahlias indoors Dahlias is not complicated. Dahlias make it easy and I will be eternally grateful to have something in my garden that is ‘Easy’.

Share with me about your dahlias?

Stay Creative my friends.

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Suggested materials:
  • Plant tags   (amazon)
  • Storage bin   (amazon)
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