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This pretty waterlily dahlia was chosen by Rachel de Thame and Chris Beardshaw for their entry in the National Dahlia Show, shown on Gardeners' World. It's easy to see why they picked it as its scarlet flowers really stand out in the crowd. A consistently good performer, it blooms over a long period and holds its flowers above the foliage so they can be seen to best effect. It was raised in New Zealand and performs excellently in the UK. Insert a stake at planting time and when plants are about 40cm (16in) tall, pinch out the top to encourage side branching. All dahlias benefit from a high-nitrogen liquid fertiliser every week during early summer and a high-potash fertiliser once a week from mid-summer to early autumn. The Royal Horticultural Society have given it their prestigious Award of Garden Merit.
Cultivar: Taratahi Ruby
Plant type: Tender perennial
Flower colour: Red
Foliage colour: Mid-green
Sun exposure: Full sun
Soil: Well-drained/light, Moist
Skill level: Experienced
Time to take cuttings: February to April
Time to plant: May to June
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