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Saturday, December 19, 2015

Dahlia- the flowering plant of winter season

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The first Dahlia bloom was seen by me only today in my school garden. It looked so solitary and so beautiful that I could not resist the temptation of taking its photograph.

Dahlia has a large number of varieties with all its hybrids in various hues and colours. It is a genus of bushy herbaceous and perennial plants. Other species that relate to dahlia are sunflower, daisy, chrysanthemum and Zinnia.
Dahlia plant with brightly coloured flower
Dahlia plant
Dahlia has not less than 42 species with species of hybrids. It belongs to family Asteraceae. These plants are commonly grown in gardens during winter season in India. The stem of dahlia ranges in height from a minor 30cm to 2.4m. These plants do not produce scented flowers. They attract insects for pollination by display of their bright colours.

Dahlia is the National Flower of Mexico. It was declared as National Flower of Mexico in the year 1963. The plant has tubers that are often used for vegetative propagation of these plants.
Dahlia is found in most parts of the world. It especially grows on uplands and mountains.

Pests and Diseases
Some of the serious pests of dahlia are earwigs that deform blooms, aphids that damage young stems, and red spider mite that disturbs foliage and causes discolouration of petals. Some of the fungal diseases of dahlia are powdery mildew, grey mould, wilt, smut etc. During winter tubers are lifted from the ground and stored in a cool and frost free condition. Hybrid dahlias are grown in well watered and free drainage conditions. They demand sufficient sunlight.

Types of Dahlia flowers

Single-flowered dahlias, Anemones(Anem), Collerette dahlias(cd), Water lily dahlias(WL), Decorative dahlias(D),Ball dahlias(B), Pompon dahlias(Pom), Cactus dahlias(C), Semi-cactus dahlias(S-C), Miscellaneous dahlias(MIS C), Fimbricated dahlias(FIM), Single Orchid or Star dahlias(Sin O), Double Orchid dahlias(Dblo), Peony flowered dahlias(P).

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