Heirloom Dahlia, Formal Decorative Dahlia 'Thomas A. Edison'


Family: Asteraceae (ass-ter-AY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Dahlia (DAHL-ya) (Info)
Cultivar: Thomas A. Edison
Additional cultivar information:(aka Thomas Edison, Thomas Alva Edison)
Hybridized by Maytrott
Registered or introduced: 1929
» View all varieties of Dahlias



Flower Size:

Medium - 6 to 8 inches (150 to 200 mm) diameter

Bloom Color:

Purple, Wine, Violet


Unknown - Tell us


36-48 in. (90-120 cm)


18-24 in. (45-60 cm)




Other details:

Unknown - Tell us

Soil pH requirements:

6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic)

6.6 to 7.5 (neutral)

Patent Information:


Propagation Methods:

By dividing rhizomes, tubers, corms or bulbs (including offsets)

From herbaceous stem cuttings


Parts of plant are poisonous if ingested

Seed Collecting:

N/A: plant does not set seed, flowers are sterile, or plants will not come true from seed

Foliage Color:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Characteristics:

Flowers are good for cutting

Water Requirements:

Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater

Where to Grow:

Suitable for growing in containers


This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:

Alabaster, Alabama

La Jolla, California

Guyton, Georgia

Frankfort, Kentucky

Revere, Massachusetts

Bay City, Michigan

Saint Paul, Minnesota

Roswell, New Mexico

Babylon, New York

Southold, New York

Corvallis, Oregon

Greensburg, Pennsylvania

Broaddus, Texas

Issaquah, Washington

Vancouver, Washington

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Gardeners' Notes:


On Oct 11, 2013, trustmissy from Bay City, MI wrote:

This is a tall and beautiful dinner plate purple dahlia. If you check out the pictures on this site, the one from Swan Dahlias is the actual color. It blooms for a long time and is great for cut flowers as well as being beautiful in the garden.


On Aug 14, 2012, Caladria from Greensburg, PA wrote:

I am a pretty amateur gardener. I found the tuber for this at a Family Dollar and was so in love with the color and texture of the bloom in the picture that I bought it for $2.50. I followed the directions for planting it in my modest bed containing very average soil in a sunny spot. My expectations were low.

Without any fuss, It grew. And grew and grew and grew with beautiful, dark foliage and has just produced its second bloom. Gorgeous! Everything I hoped for. It actually takes several days for the bloom to blossom fully, but the color is dark and royal, and rich. Big, fat bumble bees like to roll around in the center. I just love this plant and plan to save it for next year.


On Apr 10, 2011, BUFFY690 from Prosperity, SC (Zone 7b) wrote:

Found this georgous thing in a dollar store bin, glad to see high ratings can't wait for it to pop out of the ground.


On Aug 23, 2009, dahlia_fanatic from Corvallis, OR wrote:

This is a beautiful dahlia in the garden and is also suitable for cutting. The shade of purple is really lovely and it produces lots of blooms. A favorite of mine!


On Jan 6, 2007, bluespiral from (Zone 7a) wrote:

This dahlia out-performs every other dahlia I have ever grown (over the years, about 50). It makes a full, bushy plant loaded with classic formal decorative, dark purple flowers and produces an unusual amount of seed. With all these qualities of vigor, I think it would be worthwhile to sow the seed, which I plant to do this winter.

Usually, I have sown dahlia seed at room temperature and it germinates within about 5 days. Some use the baggy method. However, according to one source , some dahlia seed has actually been germinated by the winter sowing method in zone 7 (See the DG Winter Sowing Forum for further details).

I don't know how useful it is to know this, but some areas find that dahlias are "only" "occasionally severely damaged" by deer - no tell... read more