Sir Alf Ramsey DahliasSir Alf Ramsey DahliasSir Alf Ramsey Dahlias

Sir Alf Ramsey Dahlia Tubers

Dahlia Sir Alf Ramsey (Decorative)Plant guarantee for 1 yearFeefo logo

The details

  • Colour: lilac-pink with white/cream centres
  • Flower size: 25-30cm
  • Type: decorative
  • Cutting: yes
  • Height/spread: 1.5m x 50cm
  • Flowering: Jul-Oct
  • Planting months: end Feb-July
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3 +
£ 4.32
£ 3.42
3 Litre
3 +
£ 9.96
£ 8.94

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Sir Alf Ramsey Dahlia Plants

Sir Alf Ramsey is an absolute stunner of a dahlia, with huge frou-frou lilac double flowers up to 30cm across. The centre of the flower and base of each petal is a lovely creamy white, which tapers gradually to a point of icy lavender-pink. With a little deadheading and some feeding, this is a dahlia that will bloom from mid summer to mid-autumn, at least, possibly to the frosts, bringing long-lasting drama and colour to the back of borders and roomy pots in full sun. The blooms make magnificent cut flowers, which last remarkably well in a vase. Take a look at our entire collection of Dahlias.


  • Colour: lilac-pink with white/cream centres
  • Flower size: 25-30cm
  • Type: decorative dahlia
  • Cutting: yes, long-lasting in a vase
  • Height/spread: 1.5m x 50cm
  • Flowering: July to October
  • Planting months: end February to July

Growing Sir Alf Ramsey Dahlias

Alf is a tall specimen, reaching up to 1.5m, so he's best planted towards the back of a border or in a big, weighty pot. Like all dahlias, Alf appreciates a nice sheltered, sunny spot, where he won't be buffeted by winds or bitten by an unexpected late frost. When you're planting, think about access for later in the season, for deadheading and cutting stems to bring inside for vases. Remember also that the flowers are huge, so he will need to be supported with brushwood, canes and string, or special metal plant rings. These are far easier put in when the plants are small, in late spring or very early summer. If you're growing dahlias in pots, you'll need something large to balance out the height and flower size, filled with a good multipurpose compost. In borders, dahlias need well-drained, moist soil, so incorporate plenty of garden compost or leaf mould when preparing your planting spot.

To be sure of flowers the following year, when the first frosts have blackened the stems, cut down your plants, then dig up the tubers. After brushing off the soil, store them upside down on seed trays in a cool shed until spring.

Planting Companions

Dahlias are some of the best, longest-lasting late-summer border stars, so they need supporting roles that will match them in flowering season and style. In this case, this means other dahlias in cool pinks, purples and whites, so try Franz Kafka, a stunning ball dahlia in purple-pink; white Edge of Joy with its lilac centres; and superbly tactile pale pink Wizard of Oz. Nearer the front of the border, try dark purple Salvia nemorosa Caradonna for a contrast in flower shape, or the stiff, steely silver stems of eryngiums. Silver and purple are both wonderful combined with lilac pink. In the same vein, later-flowering lavenders make wonderful planting companions with this shade of pink.

Did you know?

Sir Alf Ramsey (1920-1999) was an English footballer who represented England at the international level, and was manager from 1963 to 1974, leading the team to World Cup victory in 1966. His dahlia was bred by Tottenham fan and dahlia breeder Peter Cleaver.

For flowers of exhibition size, dahlia coaches remove the growing point when four or five pairs of leaves have developed. They then allow just two or three shoots to develop. When each terminal bud is the size of a 10 pence piece, they remove any side buds. Do this at home and you could have flowers up to 40cm across.

Sir Alf Ramsey is in the decorative category, with flowers from 8cm to 30cm across, which look striking in borders or in a vase. If you're cutting them to bring indoors, try the professional florist's technique of cutting them when three-quarters open, then trimming the stems again underwater.

Dahlias are natives of the higher reaches of Mexico and Central America, from which six species have been bred for ornamental use. They grow from tubers, which is a thickened underground stem or rhizome that serves as a food reserve for the plant.

Dahlias were one of the favourites of the late great Christopher Lloyd. His garden at Great Dixter in Sussex (now overseen by Fergus Garrett) is still a wonderful place to see dahlias and witness how they can be integrated into all kinds of planting schemes. The exotic Great Dixter combination of dahlias and cannas is hard to beat.

Planting Instructions

How to plant Dahlia Sir Alf Ramsey

Choose a spot with as much light as possible. Improve the soil from the hole by removing roots, weeds, large stones and other rubbish and mixing in about 25% by volume of well-rotted compost or manure.

Position your Sir Alf Ramsey plants 50cm apart, then backfill the hole with mixed soil and compost, firming it gently as you go. Water in thoroughly.

Deadhead. Trim back in late autumn. Bring tubers into a cool shed and store upside down until spring.