New dahlia shoots are a strong signal for every slug and snail to head for your plantings. Fortunately they are readily
controlled with a variety of available baits, copper strips or diatomaceous earth. Slug bait pellets are probably the
most effect method of control.
Early in the growing season earwigs may seek hiding spots in the upper parts of the dahlia plants either in the leaf
axils or within the flowers. Some gardeners simply remove them by hand or alternatively spray with an appropriate
pesticide. Insecticidal soaps are somewhat effective.
Later in the summer aphids may be found in abundance on some new growth and buds. There are many pesticides that can
be applied but insecticidal soaps are very effect although more than one application may be necessary to eliminate
well established infestations.
Dahlias, like many garden plants, may exhibit signs of plant viruses. Stunted growth and distorted leaves and flowers
are the usual signs along with some yellowing of leaves. There is no known cure for a plant suffering from plant virus.
The plant should be removed from the garden and placed in the garbage. Affected plants should not be composted with
other garden waste.
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