2017 – CHW
Amazingly some of the Echium pininana are already in flower and at least 12 feet tall. There was some white frost overnight, quickly burnt off in the early morning sun, but not enough to damage much or any new growth. Do echiums flower in April on Tresco? I wonder what the record height actually is?
One day of ‘filming’ with a BBC crew from London who are prerecording rhododendron centenary clips for use in Chelsea Flower Show week TV broadcasts. For eight days they have to broadcast at least two hours of prime time TV so they need to bag a fair bit of it in advance. As expected the day is a write off in the cause of ‘publicity’.We start with two hours of drone filming which gets Karol excited as they have a very posh new drone in use. Whether we will ever get to see or obtain any of the stills from the overfly remains to be seen. We do three retakes of me walking through the arch from on high and picking off a few nearly dead flowers from a Rhododendron ‘Cornish Red’. Tedious!
This all takes three hours with ‘Abs’ the producer. Thankfully it does not rain until we have finished. Abs also works for ‘The One Show’ and was not exactly a horticultural expert but at least the crew of three (plus two on the drone) was not quite as excessive as in past BBC performances.The afternoon was spent filming archive material indoors and took three hours.
Along the way I managed a few non BBC shots of:
Magnolia ‘Yakeo’ (probably) tucked away above the Main Ride tree ferns is nicely out but not on the 1997 onwards planting plans or not as this anyway.
Time for a review of the newer cherries planted in the last 15 to 20 years replacing JC’s batch which he imported at vast expense from Japan. Grafted cherries used to be a major feature on the drive but, as grafted plants, their lifespan is only 40 to 50 years and they die suddenly usually full of canker having grossly over-flowered.Just beyond the Four in Hand is a late flowering double white cherry which came in a batch from Hillier’s. With all the unusual Japanese names these obscure cherries present a naming problem.
Prunus ‘Ahoi’ by the cashpoint is another winner and well worth its place. An avenue of these would be quite a sight and the flowering period is far longer than ‘Shirotae’ or‘Kanzan’.
1927 – JCW
Yesterday was the Truro Show, nothing very new there, the usual crush of trade exhibits, the light very bad.
1924 – JCW
The Truro Show. Too late for daffs, too early for the cream of the Rhodo’s. AMW’s Werrington. Lacteum the best rhodo thee. H Hodges fine form form of R glaucum. I ran it close but no-one saw it. Nothing really new but Magor’s Rhodo damaris was very nice indeed.
1923 – JCW
A few Orbiculares open, ¾ of the very few Auklandii are open. Fargesi, barbatum, argenteum and the Corylopsis are over. Triandrus (pure) not all open. No Maddeni hybrids are really open.
1920 – JCW
The Azaleas have started. R orbiculare is the best thing we have, the Auklandii’s hold on.
1904 – JCW
Picked the first seed pod Cyclamineus x De Graaf.
1902 – JCW
The first carmine pillars open, also sparacio or two. Auklandii nearly at their best. Recurvas open, a bloom or two on Altaclarence.
1899 – JCW
Went to Appleshaw the best things I saw were 33, 57 and 146, 84 and 414, also the new poet (244).