Dahlias 101: Everything You Need to Know
Dahlias 101: Everything You Need to Know
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Written by: Jessica Reeves
A must-have flower for sooooo many brides are Dahlias! Popular flower growers like Floret Farms, have definitely made Dahlias a must have flower. Dahlias come in so many colors and varieties. With so many shapes, sizes and colors, they can suit almost any wedding color palette but there are some very important things to keep in mind if you have to have them in your wedding. Here’s everything you need to know!
Scroll to the bottom for a 60 second and full-length tutorial on incorporating faux dahlias into your designs!
Dahlia Fun Facts
- Native to Mexico and Central America. Dahlias were declared the national flower of Mexico in 1963.
- There are 49 species of Dahlias with many hybrid varieties!
- Dahlias are grown from tubers. Growers who live in colder climates will dig up their tubers at the end of the growing season and then replant them in the Spring!
Why Flower Moxie Doesn't Sell Dahlias
Here at Flower Moxie, we love Dahlias as much as anyone… MAYBE MORE!! However, there are reasons why we no longer sell them.
- Dahlias do not ship well: Dahlias are an extremely fragile flower that are difficult to ship. Their petals can bruise very easily and they don’t like to be out of water for long periods of time. They are prone to “shattering” or losing petals in large quantities which sucks because (a) it’s messy and (b) then you have busted flowers. Whomp whomp.
- Dahlias have a short growing season: Dahlias are a late summer flower that are primarily available between late July, August, and September. With its short growing season, flower farms are very dependent on the growing season. If there’s a heat wave or extremely rainy season, dahlia crops can be wiped out for that season. For weddings where certain colors are in high demand it’s tough for dahlia farmers to keep up with demand
These issues plus inconsistencies make shipping Dahlias a struggle for many companies, not just Flower Moxie.
How Do I Get My Hands on Some Sweet Dahlias?
That being said, if Dahlia’s are your MUST HAVE FLOWER then here are some tips to make the best of it!
- Scope out your local flower farm: Local farms are going to be your best bet to source Dahlias! Since Dahlias don’t like to be out of water for extended periods of time, farmers are able to cut the flowers and get them into water immediately! That means you’ll have a much better chance of keeping them fresh for your big day!
- Farmer's markets: Don’t live close to a flower farm? Try a farmer's market! Farmers can transport their flowers and produce more easily than a FedEx delivery truck since it's a shorter transportation distance and time.
- Keep your Dahlias cool: Even though Dahlias grow primarily in the hot summer months they actually don’t like being hot. After being cut from the main plant, the flowers prefer to be kept in cooler temperatures and in cool, fresh water. Make sure to keep them in a cool, dark area and away from bright sunny windows!
- Grow them yourself! If you have a yard you might want to try planting some tubers yourself. The thing to remember is that you can’t entirely depend on this; you’ll want to have a backup plan!!! However, your plant could potentially yield several beautiful blooms for your bridal bouquet… and you might find your secret passion!
Photo: Christy Beal Photography | Moxie Couple: Sara and Eric | Sara used a single dahlia to make her bridal bouquet pop!
If the thought of growing your dahlia’s (waitttt whhhaaattt????.... Jessica I have no YARD!!!!) gives you the heebie jeebies and there are no friendly farmers in your vicinity- fear not! There are still ways to have the beauty of Dahlias with a few tweaks!
- Opt for Faux: There are lots of great faux options out there these days. Check out our Amazon recommendations for our top faux dahlia picks! Usually just one BOMB faux Dahlia in your bridal bouquet will do the trick (see photo above - Sara used one Dahlia!). You’ll also never have to worry about bruised petals or shattering. Faux Dahlias will look beautiful for years to come and you’ll be able to have a wonderful keepsake after the wedding.
- Think about Cremone Mums: Cremone Mums are a fantastic option instead of Dahlias. First, they’re HARDY AF! Second, cremones come in a wide range of colors and the shape of their petals mimics the layered shape of Dahlias. They are the perfect substitute for Dahlias because they offer a similar texture and shape. Consider these long lasting blooms for your wedding flowers!
Understanding the limitations of certain flowers is one of the most important things to know as a florist. Even if you love a certain flower, factors such as time of year, temperature, and availability are HUGE things to consider. However, don’t pin all your wedding flower dreams on one single flower- that’s a huge weight for that bloom to carry! Instead keep in mind your color palette, shape/style of centerpieces, and time of year. I promise you that there are more than enough flowers to provide you with the wedding blooms of your dreams!!!
How to Add Faux Dahlias to Bouquets
Click the photo to watch a 60 second tutorial on exactly how to incorporate faux Dahlias into your bouquets!
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Full Faux Dahlia Tutorial
About the Author
Jessica has a BFA in Art Education/Printmaking and her MFA in Studio Art with a focus in Non-Toxic printmaking. She brings 10 years of floral experience to her roles at Flower Moxie, having worked in Boston, NYC, and Newport, RI. We still don't know if she's a real person or a hologram but work keeps getting done.