Did you know that the dahlia is the national flower of Mexico? The native dahlias found in the mountains of Mexico and Guatemala are the genetic source for the modern hybrid dahlias we grow today. While busy conquering the Aztec nation, 16th-century Spanish conquistadors pursued numerous side explorations that led to the discovery of the New World plant life. Botanists accompanying the soldiers discovered what is sometimes referred to as the tree dahlia (D. imperialis). The hollow stems of these plants, some growing to over 20 feet, were often used for hauling water or as an actual source of water to traveling hunters. In fact, the Aztec name for “tree dahlias” was “acocotli” or “water-cane.”
2019 has been declared the Year of the Dahlia by the National Garden Bureau. For more information, click here.