dahlia 'Bishop of Llandaff' with red flowers and black foliage
Photo: Rob Whitworth/GAP Photos
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Flashy Flowers

The flashy dahlia family includes thousands of named varieties, most of them falling into 19 categories. Types are designated by flower shape, from the miniature pompon and the daisy-like single to the spiky cactus bloom. Traces of the dahlia's wildflower past can be seen in older varieties, including the buttercup-like '' and the scarlet 'Bishop of Llandaff.' Recent releases, such as the candy-colored 'Eden Talos' and the ruffled 'Leslie Renee,' have more formal shapes, with the sturdy stems and perfect symmetry that garner blue ribbons at garden shows today.

Shown: Cheery 'Bishop of Llandaff' has red flowers that pop against moody black foliage.
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