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

24th January 2010

Helleborus 'Walbertons Rosemary' .
It has been a strange week here. The weather forecasters have been predicting bad weather all week, and it hasn't arrived which is delightful. Everybody is talking about what might happen, cold to come etc etc, but it has been beautiful spring weather. All the ordinary and expected things have been surprising. In all, it has been strange.
The garden has managed to carry on magnificently, despite my occasional distraction and on Thursday I added this Hellebore to number grown here (I was away being distracted by other things). It seems so like the other Hellebores yet it is a strange thing. A hybrid between H. x hybridus and H.niger that has been micropropagated to make it freely available. I wouldn't normally show such a new plant here, but I was passing it yesterday and the sunlight caught the flowers. The smallest of things can be perfect, and it makes the moment.

24th January 2010

Helleborus x hybridus 'Crimson Ruffles' .
Up in the woods, the Hellebores have been producing little fat bubble buds. This came from Robin White last year and during the year I had convinced myself that it was just a red anemone flowered hybrid, but it has opened and it is more perfect than I remember.
It has had a bright bud at ground level for several weeks now, but this week has seen it rise up and open. Once again, I was in the right place when the sun delivered the right time. I have heard people moaning about the bright new colours that are appearing among hybrid Hellebores and particularly moaning about upward looking flowers and the like. Bah, humbug (or have I missed the season for that?) I well remember the dull little flowers of old, spotted with inconsequence, lopsided and twisted and expecting to be adored in April.
No doubt at all in my mind, give me 'Crimson Ruffles' in January every time.

24th January 2010

Hepatica nobilis japonica 'Hakurin' .
It has been a week for the Ranunculaceae, and it is a family that seems to specialise in tiny little scraps of perfection. The Hepatica are delightful, but they are unspeakably troublesome, and these Japanese cultivars are among the worst. Late in the summer they retreat to resting buds, and then the nervous wait begins until the first flowers open in the spring.
Those cultivars that have been available have been tiny little shoots, and it has taken a couple of years for this one to reach flowering size but this has been another moment of strange perfection. The white colour flattens the appearance, and as a double it is neither precisely formed nor formally symmetrical, but it is a wondeful welcome to the season.

24th January 2010

Ranunculus ficaria .
The Lesser Celandines are sitting around in pots being obstinate - a common passtime among the Ranunculaceae - but ther will pull themselves together and get over it. There are very few buds yet showing, but a bit more action among the seedlings. I haven't checked the parentage of this one but the flower was interesting enough to keep whatever it's genetic heritage.
The picture has turned out a little more spectacular than the reality. The plant has very dark reverses to the petals, but the sunlight has caught them and brought out the redness. It is a quite marvellous thing and perhaps in dull light it will seem more ordinary, but yesterday afternoon (when the picture was taken) the whole garden was alight like this.

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.
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