Wednesday, 27 May 2015

Jamesia americana

Jamesia americana
Looks like a cross between a Deutzia and a Viburnum and is in fact a close relative of the former, but from the western USA, rather than Asia. I have it on good authority that this never flowers in the UK - mine evidently haven't been informed. 
I have two forms - the 'normal' form, a medium sized shrub with leaves about 2ins across, and a compact form from Larimer Co. Colorado, which has smaller, more textured foliage. Both are flowering at the moment.
Jamesia americana
I've been keeping them with the other Californians in a relatively open sunny hot place but I now suspect they are better in a moist semi shady situation. 
2L pots ~ £12




Saturday, 23 May 2015

Canna x ehemannii

Now for the big one - I've been looking forward to this. I finally have some divisions from the big clump on the nursery.
Canna x ehemannii, Caryopteris divaricata & Thladiantha dubia
This is a wonderful plant - I normally find Cannas a bit garish for my taste but this one has both vivid flowers and real class, plus it's an enormous tropical looking banana-y thing to 10ft or more in full flower with broad lush green leaves.
Canna x ehemannii
Plus, it's been hardy here. All I've done is give it a thick pile of straw in winter.
Canna x ehemannii
It dies down completely (the straw is held in place by the dead stems) but always reappears in May and is luxuriant and magnificent by August. A wonderful plant for anyone with a taste for the tropics.
Many thanks to Alan for the original plant.
Canna x ehemannii
5L pots ~ £20




Schisandra chinensis

Schisandra grandiflora
A vigorous but choice vine with nodding rounded creamy gardenia-scented blooms in late spring. Best in a moist soil in a cool spot but quite adaptable.
3L pots ~ £14




Friday, 8 May 2015

Horminum pyrenaicum - two forms

Horminum pyrenaicum
A choice Pyrenean alpine making lush rosettes of crinkly leaves with one-sided spikes of rich dark purple flowers in spring. Good for planting in a crevice between rocks, Like many true alpines, although they need good drainage they don't cope well with drought.
1L pots ~ £7



Horminum pyrenaicum alboviolaceum
Horminum pyrenaicum alboviolaceum
A form with white flowers tinged with violet at the edges. Very pretty.
1L pots ~ £7




Xanthoceras sorbifolium

Xanthoceras sorbifolium
A rare and highly sought-after small tree or medium sized shrub from Central Asia. As the name implies it has pinnate (Sorbus-like) leaves and in spring it produces handsome clusters of good sized white flowers, turning pink with age. Easy and hardy in a sunny well-drained spot and an excellent choice for poor chalky soils. The photo is the first flowering on a four year old seedling. The plants on offer are a year younger but big enough to plant out in the garden.
2L pots ~ £12 (very few)




Wednesday, 6 May 2015

Deutzia pulchra

Deutzia I think get unfairly ignored by the discerning gardener - possibly too many memories of D.scabra plena bought from Woolie's gardening department back in the 70s - possibly the dreariest and least interesting shrub commonly in cultivation. There are plenty of good Deutzias though. The flowers are beautifully designed and repay close inspection.

Deutzia pulchra
Deutzia pulchra
A potentially quite large semi-evergreen species with flaking bark.
Deutzia pulchra
The flowers remind me very much of Correa flowers being bell-shaped and with the same soft texture, though in this case a simple chalky white. Easy and reliable in a variety of situations.
3L pots ~ £10