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

2nd January 2011

Hamamelis mollis .
The big freeze of December has finally lifted and the garden has been basking in the warmth of seasonal average temperatures, which has been a great relief. Early spring plants that have been delayed by the freeze have made great strides forward in the last few days and if it lasts a few more then there will be a carpet of bloom across the garden (a rather threadbare carpet, but I won't complain).
For another week I have escaped showing pictures of sturdy evergreens, though I was tempted to show a very relieved Wollemia. It has enjoyed the rise in temperatures, but it is especially happy that the season when I might drape it in pink fairy lights has passed!
This Hamamelis grows next to the Wollemia and produced a couple of flowers before the freeze but is now doing it with enthusiasm. I can't say I noticed any scent but it is nice to have some colour.

2nd January 2011

Camellia 'Snow Flurry' .
This Camellia also managed an odd flower as the first autumn snow fell, and I thought all the buds had been blasted by the weather, but it has managed to open another. A number of plants went into the garden last year that have changed the usual order of spring. My first Camellia has always been 'Show Girl' but the buds are barely swelling as 'Snow Flurry' comes to an end.
A few more Camellia sasangua forms were planted out last year as well, with the hope of autumn flowers, but the young plants were overgrown with weeds during summer and they haven't shown any enthusiasm for flowering though hopefully those that survive will do better next year.

2nd January 2011

Cyclamen coum
This pretty Turkish Cyclamen has always been a reliable performer in January. This one is growing in a pot in the greenhouse and I would have expected the first flowers at the start of December. During the freeze I went poking around in the snow to find the leaves of the plants outside, but there was nothing. The first leaves appeared at the end of last week, and today I found the first buds. They will be a much stronger colour than this poor pot bound knobbly old corm can manage and I should really plant it out - but then I would have no flowers to show.
It was kept indoors to produce seed so that I could have plenty more for the garden, but somehow I never get around to sowing it and it might be easier to just admit my lethargy and buy a few more.
I don't suffer from the strange insanity that often affects Cyclamen growers and leaves them yearning for pink reflexed petals all through the summer. I have always blamed the Vine Weevil. The larvae tunnel up the poor growers stems and eat out their brains. Too much ginger in my blood I think.

2nd January 2011

Ipheion uniflorum 'Froyle Mill'.
The Ipheion in the greenhouse were the first things to signal the distant vista of spring. Sometime back in November when I was weeding among the empty pots all promising invisible bulbs, I stumbled across the lush new oniony foliage of the Ipheion. Nestling among the leaves were the first buds and the warm spell has pushed them into flower.
This is a rather dull and pale example. I'm not sure if the colour requires more light or more heat to develop properly. In March this will be a deluge of saturated purple. This isn't March, this isn't a deluge and this isn't purple.
Fortunately I planted 'Wisley Blue' outside, and it won't be showing for weeks yet. I'm not sure how that one could possibly get duller or paler and I'm happy not to watch it try.

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.
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