2022 – CHW
Two things to look for today. I had expected to find Rhododendron sutchuenense in flower but they are not quite out yet. In the diary in the 1920s they were very often full out before now. Secondly I had stupidly forgotten to go and look at the huge (seedling) Magnolia campbellii above Crinodendron Hedge.
Camellia x williamsii ‘Debbie’ now has a few decent flowers on several plants.
My Labrador, Nicky, is a greedy individual but he has now taught the rest of the pack to eat camellia flowers on the ground and even off the bush. They must taste nice and not just for the pollen. I do not ever remember dogs doing this in the past. Perhaps Nicky is just bored of me photographing them and is just expressing his displeasure?I think this is Semiarundinaria fastuosa below the old dog kennels. We saw it flowering here in the summer and some of the clumps growing on an old stone faced earth bank (hedge) here are now dead. Other new young clumps already have flower buds. However younger clumps look fine still. I have taken a full set of pictures in case the whole lot dies.
First seed cones on a young Sciadopitys verticillata above Magnolia ‘Mr Julian’.
A search for magnolias out or showing colour. Eight photographed here before I ran out of time. There are loads more nearly there. As early as it has ever been looking in the garden diary for today which shows 1962 and 1988 as being fairly early years for a little colour.The first excellent and darker Magnolia ‘Lanarth’ seedling in Old Park is just out. Look at the colour in a fallen petal!
A trip with Jaimie to refine our planting plants for when it finally dries up later this month. Lots of good rhododendron to find places for from the frames.First blown open flower on Magnolia ‘Bishop Peter’. As early as usual!
A large commotion outside the front gate with crows mobbing something. It turns out to be a buzzard with a dead pheasant it is eating half way up the Magnolia dawsoniana. Only the wings and breastbone are left.
2016 – CHW
Today saw the official arrival of spring in Cornwall. Read more details here about how Magnolias were delivered to 10 Downing Street.
‘Spring comes to Cornwall’ (or England) as the Great Gardens announce that six record Magnolia campbellii trees in six Great Gardens (Caerhays, Tregothnan, Heligan, Trengwainton, Trebah and Trewithen) all have 50 or more blooms out already. A month earlier than last year’s announcement of ‘spring’ and an all time record early year.Last year the launch involved decorating a carriage on a Great Western train to Paddington with magnolias. This year’s launch sees a Great Gardens delegation with magnolia flowers arriving at 10 Downing Street to present them to the PM with six Cornish MPs in attendance (including Sarah Newton); ‘Cornwall is open for business, come and see our gardens now’ is the cry. Toby Ashworth of The Nare hotel is sponsoring this PR extravaganza with my brother and Jonathan Jones from Tregothnan also present as part of the presentation team.I manage a turgid interview with Radio Cornwall who introduce me as ‘the head gardener’ although the interviewer lady came to my office in the castle on arrival. Also Westcountry TV at Heligan with Tim Smit’s son joining in the interview. So all the fun of the fair on the media front. It remains to be seen tonight what coverage we get on national and local TV and if the newspapers pick up on it.
Red faces all round if it snows in the next 10 days and all the magnolia flowers perish!
2015 – CHW
Second year of flowering of two now evergreen species of Polyspora (ex Crug Farm Nursery) white camellia like flowers. Renamed as previously Gordonia. A welcome addition to the garden and well worth propagating. Tregrehan have grown these plants for 20 years with no difficulty with cold.
1998 – FJW
Jamie picked first Magnolia flower ( Tin Garden pale Campbellii)1994 – FJW
First hard frost since November1991 – FJW
More snow after very cold 5 days – garden looks sad.1967 – FJW
Saluenensis past their best. Williamsii at peak. Macabeanum open above Rogers Quarry. Indecently early year.
1925 – JCW
Argenteum ¼ open. Barbatum a few, some Lutescens, Flavidum none, Sutchuenensis a few, hybrids of Sut’ se several, a few blood red Arboreums, E darleyensis is the best thing.
1916 – JCW
A few daffs open, quite ½ the ciliatum, Moupinense over, pink Arboreums show colour, best red hybrids wane, also Barbatum, R flavidum is very nice, Rendles scarlets moving, Argenteum ½ out, Sutchuenense some open, P pissardi injured by the gales. R praecox going over, Prunus conradinae over.
1908 – JCW
Only one seedling trumpet open. Some N cyc and hybrids found, no crossed daffs, R praecox shows colour, C coum very good, a few roses yet, Clematis balearica useful, heaths starting.
1906 – JCW
Some Caerhays and Lent Lily just open, P pissardi well open. Made my first cross mon x min.
1902 – JCW
Heavy snow three inches everywhere.
1897 – JCW
Forsythia is out, snowdrops going back, several Caerhays single opening.