Not many are complaining about forecast temperatures near 60 for the next 48 hours. The Master Gardeners at Cornell Cooperative Extension aren't complaining either, but they do suggest you check on tubers you stored at the end of last season.

Dahlias or other tubers should be stored in a dry, cool, frost-proof area, at about 50 degrees.  If it exceeds 50, tubers will dry out and shrivel. Preventive measures you can take include:

  • Wrapping the clumps in newspapers
  • Packing them in barrels or boxes of peat moss, vermiculite, or dry sawdust
  • Use storage containers that allow air flow like; baskets, mesh bags or nylons

While checking on your tubers, check them for rot.  Cut off the bad spots or if they feel soft or look moldy, the best bet is to toss them.  Some shriveling can be overcome by placing them in a bucket of water overnight.  Then allow them to dry before placing them back in storage.  If you see roots beginning to develop look for a drier place to store them.

Almost all tubers and bulbs are stored in the same manner.  Get more tips with online fact sheets at CCE's website or call their horticulture hotline at 315-736-3394 between 9 and noon Wednesday and Fridays.

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