Back after a week out. Last week I was “up country”, sampling the delights of the M25 and M3. I was judging camellias at the RHS show at Savill Garden; now that is a lovely garden, and I managed to spend all of Friday at Wisley, a garden that seems a little less to do with my sort of gardening every time I go there.
Back home it’s all picking up in pace, most things starting to show signs of growth, lots of flowers, seeds popping up like mad. Six on Saturday is moving away from trying to make six out of three and becoming a matter of choosing from lots of contenders.
Here then, are my nominations for this week:
My Camellia of the week has to be Camellia reticulata ‘Mystique’. This is puzzling me somewhat as it is not in the Camellia Register (never registered?), not in the New Zealand Camellia Register (it was raised in New Zealand) and not in commerce in this country, the Plantfinder saying it was last listed in 2013. The reticulatas are quite hard to propagate and it was not very vigorous as a young plant, but it seems to me to be worth a bit of effort.
Last year I did a friend a favour and replaced their spring bedding with summer bedding. A good many tulips were removed, bagged up in a plastic sack and tossed in a corner for a few months. In early autumn I went through them, expecting them to have mainly rotted, which they hadn’t, separated tulips from daffs, gave the daffs to the local school and potted up all the tulips in a big plastic pot. My expectations were very modest; I think it’s fair to say they have been surpassed.
A recent speaker at our garden club talked about her National Collection of double primroses. Suitably fired up, I bought nine. I have to admit that I like them no better than the plain, single, wild primroses that I have lots of, but I think I like them as much.
Talking of cultivated forms of native plants, my blue wood anemones are flowering. I think I have planted three or four different ones over the years but they all look identical. They’re not really cultivated, more selected. I know of one patch of blue ones growing wild not so far from here. So far I have resisted the temptation to dig a bit up.
Erythroniums are not native to the UK but I’m not going to hold that against them. This one came from a local nursery and is a selection they have made, called ‘Illand Pink’. I bought five and they seem to vary in colour so presumably were not a single clone. I hope they will produce seed so I can bulk them up quickly. I love the leaves just as much as the flowers.
Pleione formosana. I’m not very good with things in pots that are doing nothing for most of the year. My concentration wanders and things die. This one is into its second year though and is so lovely when it’s flowering that I have made it all sorts of promises to look after it no matter what. Till death us do part.
There will be many other sixes to enjoy, all linked from meme-meister The Propagator’s six. Sowing the seed of six on Saturday, about a year ago, must rank amongst his finest propagational achievements. Take a bow good sir!