Home Index Web Stuff Copyright Links Me Archive


Thats enough introduction - on with the plants!
To navigate this site, use the links above, or the detailed links at the bottom of this page.

... out in the garden.

17th October 2010

x Amarine 'Wildside' .
Sooner or later a Nerine week will come along, and here it is. The sun has been shining unexpectedly and it makes the bright colours shine in a way that would be quite disconcerting if it was paint.
This is (at least by name) a hybrid between Amaryllis belladonna and a Nerine but the more I look at it, the less convinced I am. Other clones of the hybrid I have seen have broader tepals with less pronounced curling at the tips. It is less clear in the clone 'Zwanenburg', but even here the tepals are distinctly broader at the base. In this plant the tepals are strap shaped and narrow along their whole length. I am trying a range of pollen on it this year to see if I can persuade it to set seed, but at present I am inclined to think it is simply a rather good (and hardy) Nerine. With me it is growing next to 'Zeal Giant' and 'Fuchsine' and I would struggle to distinguish them without the benefit of labels!

17th October 2010

Nerine 'Mother of Pearl'.
I have been rather rude about this plant in the past, because I am convinced it is wrongly named. I can't imagine that anybody thinks Mother of Pearl should be blood red. However, the flower also has these large pale marks in the centre of the tepals, which make it unlike anything else I grow. (Apart from Ranunculus ficaria, and I can distinguish them).
It came originally as a dry bulb from Holland and I assumed that a nurseryman somewhere along the way had mixed up the stocks. I know other people have the same red-orange plant under this name, so it is quite widespread and I thought we would just have to live with an odd name. Perhaps the breeders wife was called Pearl and her mother had a particularly ruddy complexion. Who can tell. Sometimes it simply isn't possible to make sense of these things.
Unfortunately, I was looking at the bulbs from the same supplier this year, and they were distinctly paler skinned than the red-orange flowered forms so I bought one, and it has flowered a delightful pale pink. I have come to the conclusion that clarity of understanding and delightful flowers are mutually exclusive concepts. I can live with confusion.

17th October 2010

Nerine 'Kashmir'.
It is perhaps true that every apple has a worm, and Nerine is not spared. Virus spreads rapidly through collections of Nerine and seems especially troublesome among plants grown in pots. I am quite ruthless in throwing out all those plants that show signs of leaf mottling, and I go to great pains to treat all outbreaks of mealybug (the major vector of virus). Plants with virus are put outside to take their chances (well away from the greenhouse) but I am starting to think I will need two greenhouses - one for plants that are clean, and another for those that are virussed but too significant to throw out. In theory the virus might be able to pass through the seed to the next generation, but I haven't yet seen seedlings here that look infected.
And the reason for all this nonsense ? 'Kashmir is my favourite of the pale pink N.sarniensis forms. I am very fond of it indeed, and this year the leaves are showing some distinctive mottling and streaking. I could cry. Throw it out or keep it and sulk?
This may be the straw that built the new greenhouse.

17th October 2010

Nerine bowdenii .
I have a number of clones of N.bowdenii and as the years go by I am appreciating the subtle variation among them. Yesterday I was at a Nerine Society meeting that was looking at hardy Nerine and it left me thinking about this plant, which I had otherwise more or less overlooked - it is vigorous and mid-pink and I always though unexceptional. Rather like snowdrops, when somebody points out the significant characters they all become 'special'.
This one has broad tepals with little crinkling and slight recurving at the tips. It fits quite well with the description of the earliest introductions of the species at the beginning ot the 20th century. I wish I could trace the origins of the bulb, but it comes from a colony growing in a hedge locally so confirming a provenance will be tricky. It is vigorous, and seriously pink in its season and that will have to be sufficient.

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.