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Skimmia japonica 'Marlot'



30th March 2014


There is a peculiar sort of tidiness about gardeners. Sometimes it is difficult to see among the ragged lawns and disorganised tool sheds that make up the visible reality but there is a truth beyond that. In a realm that the gardeners occupies and no-one else ever visits, there is a tidiness of intention.
That is to say the gardener has an intention and some time after that the garden will follow. The time lag can be considerable, we generally look the other way.
In this case it is the tidiness of an idea. I grow 'Magic Marlot' and had become obessed with seeing the green leaved plant it sported from. Suddenly there it was, in a Garden Centre being sold for winter decoration, as though it wasn't the most important thing in the place. It came home with me and a piece of the puzzle has fitted into place.
Originally bred as a compact flowering plant for mid-winter, it has been almost entirely replaced by its variegated offshoot which is brighter during the dismal season.