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Thats enough introduction - on with the plants!
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... out in the garden.

19th July 2009

Hedychium yunnanense .
A rainy week has provided some distractions. The process of levelling ground continues - eventually I will have a path that leads straight to the greenhouse without undue meandering, but in the process I keep getting the digger stuck in wet mud. So far a certain amount of ingenuity and a fair bit of (ironic) digging out the digger with a spade have solved the problem. As a result, I didn't actually get into the greenhouse until the end of the week and found Hedychium yunnanense in full flower.
After a difficult winter it is a delight to have the first flowers of the season. Although they signal the imminence of autumn, it should be a good long season and there are plenty more to come.

19th July 2009

Habranthus robustus .
The wet weather also seems to have stimulated the Habranthus into flower. I have a number of forms of this species, all grown from seed, and almost all labelled as other things. I also have a single bulb that was sent to me directly from China that was claiming to be a Lloydia!
In its natural state this species decorates Argentina and southern Brazil but it is generous in its production of papery black seeds and they have allowed it to colonise large areas of the globe, often finding a home in places where it is not entirely welcome. In a pot in the greenhouse it is a seasonal wonder.

19th July 2009

Eucomis vandermerwei 'Octopus' .
More bulbs, this time from South Africa. This is the smallest of the Eucomis species, and it is starting to be used to create small hybrids with dark coloured flowers. I haven't seen any make it to the commercial market yet, but it is only a question of time. This is a vigorous selection of the species, and it may be hardier than the typical form, which was seriously damaged by the winter this year. It has an unfortunate scent - winemakers will know the moment when you have racked the newly fermented wine off of the yeast sediment and you pour the waste down the sink and make an unappreciative face. It is an unfortunate scent.
Eucomis are an up-and-coming genus and this one is going to play a significant part in its approaching popularity.

19th July 2009

Heliconia 'Olympic Dream' .
And finally a bit of nonsense. I don't really have facilities to grow Heliconia, which are uncompromisingly tropical (they will forgive summer temperatures outside, but only really succeed if they get a tropical winter to recover!) They have no dormant season, so I can lust after them but I have killed a few over the years and don't see a lot of point in making it a massacre. Every now and then I see one prospering in a glasshouse - the H.rostrata at Wisley is a current example - and want to try again, but for the most part they grow very large and need it very warm, so there isn't much point.
Unfortunately, good intentions are not enough in the face of commercial temptation. This one turned up as a flowering pot plant (as they often do at the end of summer) and it is small enough to think that I might manage to keep it in the propagator over winter. For the moment, it has a long hot lazy summer to enjoy!

Acorus Alocasia Anemone Arisaema Arum Asarum Aspidistra Begonia Bromeliads Camellia
Carnivorous Cautleya Chirita Chlorophytum Clivia Colocasia Crocosmia Dionaea Drosera Epimedium
Eucomis Fuchsia Galanthus Hedychium Helleborus Hemerocallis Hepatica Hosta Impatiens Iris
Liriope Ophiopogon Pinguicula Polygonatum Ranunculus ficaria Rhodohypoxis Rohdea Roscoea Sansevieria Sarracenia
Scilla Sempervivum Tricyrtis Tulbaghia Utricularia Viola odorata Watsonia

To find particular groups of plants I grow, click on the genus name in the table above. Click on the "Index" box at the top of the page for the full list.
I have a lot of good intentions when it comes to updating this site, and I try to keep a note about what is going on, if you are interested.
If you want to contact me, the address is infoMONKEYjohnjearrard.co.uk
When typing the address in, please replace MONKEY with the more traditional @ symbol! I apologise for the tiresome performance involved, but I am getting too much spam from automated systems as a result of having an address on the front page.