Legend has it that the first dahlia came from Mexico to the Botanical Gardens in Madrid towards the end of the eighteenth century. The flower was named by Abbé Cavanille in honour of the Swedish scientist & environmentalist Anders Dahl. None of my favourite books on Shimla’s flowers could tell me when they first came to India, or to Shimla.
This flower is a bushy tuberous perennial plant, native of
Interestingly, I have observed only single-coloured dahlias in Shimla, not variegated or bi-coloured ones. You can see in the pictures the dahlias' wide colour range: from the darkest red or purple to all shades of pink, orange, yellow, white.
Placed below are some images of dahlias growing in Shimla:
They brought me a quilled, yellow dahlia,
Round ripe gold
Meticulously frilled and flaming,
A fire-ball of proclamation:
Fecundity decked in staring yellow
For all the world to see.
They brought a quilled, yellow dahlia,
To me who am barren
Shall I send it to you,
You who have taken
All I once possessed?
~ Amy Lowell ~