I've been photographing flowers since I bought my DSLR camera in 2012. I learned how to properly photograph them when I attended a flower photography workshop at a local garden store in the spring of 2013. I didn't have a favorite then, even though I think I took more photos of daisies than anything else. But when I attended a Dahlia show at Madison's Olbrich Botanical Garden, I fell in love with them. I loved the curves, the two-toned colors and the many different types I found.
Did you know that there are 42 different species of Dahlias? They are native to Mexico, related to daisies, sunflowers, chrysanthemums and zinnias (all flowers I'm also drawn to), and are classified into 14 different groups based on their design. For example, the dahlia above is part of the Pompon group.
There is also the Peony group:
The Semi-Cactus group:
The Anemone group:
The Single-Flowered group:
The Collerette group:
And the Fimbriated group:
There are also waterlily, "decorative", ball, cactus, star, double, and "miscellaneous" dahlias.
As you can see, there are so many different types of dahlias, that it's easy to mistake them for another type of flower. They consider dahlias to be "octoploids", meaning they have 8 sets of chromosomes whereas other flowers only have two. This is why there are so many different types.
The next time you go to a botanical garden, public park or flower shop, you just might find one of these beautiful, vibrant flowers (and not even know it).