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

23rd August 2009

Kaempferia laotica 'Shazam' .
The chaos of the last few weeks is beginning to subside. I have been doing some work on the greenhouse, and it is nice to take a break and see what is flowering around the place. I have to build some new staging, but now the structural work has been done there isn't such a panic.
I have grown a few Kaempferia over the years, primarily because growers in the USA have been promoting them as garden plants. Unfortunately they are no use in the UK - our summers are just not long or hot enough. During the winter I finally admitted defeat and transferred my remaining plants to a heated growing case, and this is the first time I have seen this one looking happy with its circumstances. I am really pleased to see it in flower , and I would grow some more, but there really isn't space in the case for them!

23rd August 2009

Ponerorchis graminifolia .
This is a delightful little Japanese orchid that has become available in the last couple of years. It has a strong following among plant fanciers in Japan, where myriad colour forms and patterns have been selected. In the UK we get 'mixed seedlings', but they are all pretty.
I bought a tuber last year, and it flowered last summer. I was warned that it needed to be kept very dry through the winter, and was not particularly hardy. Unfortunately it died in the winter, and I don't know if it was too wet or too cold. This year I bought three more tubers (from Thompson and Morgan, who have sent me an advertising e-mail almost every day since as a result, which serves me right for dealing with them) and this is the first of them to flower.
I will probably lift the tubers and store them indoors for the winter, and if I am lucky there will be a few more tubers than I started with (but I'm not pinning my hopes on it). This one has very small mauve dots on the white flowers, last years flower had large purple blotches. Both tiny and very striking.

23rd August 2009

Zephyranthes lindleyana .
I have grown a number of interesting things from seed that was labelled "Zephyranthes lindleyana", but I think this could well be the real thing - I bought it as a bulb from Bob Brown at Cotswold Garden Flowers. The species have a very relaxed attitude about inter-species relationships in cultivation, and most seed produced seems to be of hybrid origin. The species originates in the eastern Sierra Madre in Mexico so you might expect it to be collected rather frequently in habitat.
About six weeks ago I was sent a couple of dry bulbs of Habranthus gracilifolius from a grower in Germany, and they have also burst into flower this week. Unfortunately they don't seem to be quite so true to name, which is a constant problem with the rain lilies. As far as I can see, they are H.tubispathus roseus, which is a pretty thing. Every time a pot of wrongly named seed comes up as H.tubispathus roseus I am delighted at how pretty it is. I have pot after pot of pretty....pot after pot after pot after....yes, all very pretty.

23rd August 2009

Zingiber mioga .
This is probably the only Zingiber species that is hardy (and I have killed quite a number of them to establish the truth of that statement). It comes from Japan, and there are a very few named clones now circulating - 'Dancing Crane' is a cheery variegated form though it is not as hardy as the green one, and rarely flowers.
The strange primrose flowers are carried in tiny spikes at ground level, and by the time they appear the tall leafy shoots have started to flop about a bit, so it isn't the most satisfactory of garden plants but it is a wonderful curiosity. Last year I didn't get any flowers from it and the autumn was a little less interesting as a consequence!

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
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