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The dahlia society of south Australia inc.

The Dahlia Society of South Australia Inc (DSSA for short) has been in existence since the 8th of February 1968. However, this is where it gets interesting historically as there have been several name changes since its humble beginnings in the early 1880's as one-third of The Carnation, Dahlia and Sweet Pea Society of South Australia, which it would remain until 1929.

  • From 1929 to 1933 it was The Dahlia Growers Association of South Australia.

  • From 1933 to 1968 it was The National Dahlia Society of South Australia.

  • From 1968 to present it is the Dahlia Society of South Australia Inc.

Recognition must not be understated to one of the DSSA's most influential life members, the late Gayner Parker for his commitment to researching and collaborating this amazing history of our great society also through the assistance from many contributors it must be said. We treasure the fact that we have been in existance since the early 1880's.

Our members for decades have bred multiple award winning Dahlia's and they can be found in Dahlia gardens and exhibitions all over the world. In particular, Dahlia names bearing the prefix Croydon, Gay, Pooraka, Murray, Aitara, Christie, Hillier and Winkie. Some Dahlias bearing a single name that are still exhibited worldwide and also winning on the show bench are Cameo and Figurine bred by the late Bill Tapley as featured below.      


Distinct achievement

One distinct achievement recently was the International success of locally raised Pompon Dahlia "Winkie Lambrusco" by John Menzel of Winkie Dahlias in Winkie, South Australia ( by winning the Noel Bracewell Class (Best Overseas Raised Seedling) and the S and M Bowcock Trophy (Best Seedling Exhibit) at Great Britain's largest annual flower show, the Harrogate Flower Show (

Botanic gardens of SA

Like most societies and economies, there have been many ups and downs as far as member count is concerned but it is testament to the strong foundation and passion of the DSSA's members that through many efforts of volunteering and dedication the Society can boast an age of over 130 years and still going strong.

The DSSA holds Bi Monthly Meetings that are open to the general public, providing a social forum for information sharing and assistance on all things related to the Dahlia. Our major annual events include a Tuber Sale in November, and a Field Day at a members Dahlia garden. The Tuber sale gives the public opportunity to purchase quality Dahlia tubers supplied by members.

Through the generosity of the Botanic Gardens of South Australia, the DSSA has a dedicated area containing hundreds of Dahlias. We encourage you to visit the display of Dahlias in late Summer and Autumn and visit their website by Clicking on their logo below.



We hold an Annual State Show + Championships. Members may exhibit in the Open or Novice Sections. There are classes for all types of dahlias. We wholeheartedly encourage Novice growers to have a go at showing, you never know, you may win First Prize. 

Dahlias are shown at the following country shows: Angaston, Mannum, Tanunda, Mt Pleasant, and Mt Barker.

We publish regular Newsletters providing members with information and reminders of DSSA matters and relevant seasonal tips.​

Our Annual membership fee is:

Single  $20.00                   

Family $30.00       


Please head to our JOIN page to become a member.    ​​

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