2017 – CHW
A dry day after a week’s rain on and off. No harm in that!
Acer cappadocium ‘Aureum’ has very fine new growth indeed as a young plant in Kennel Close.
A nice batch of Deutzia compacta which came as cuttings from Peter Moore whom I suspect collected this species on a Chinese trip. Pale lilac flowers fading to white in tight clusters. Asia has raised this as a new item for the 2017 catalogue. Propagate more – it is nice!
So does Camellia ‘White Nun’ in the shade.
2015 – CHW
The large clump of Cordyline australis outside the front door is just going over. Dracaena Avenue in Falmouth is looking a bit bare now as older cordylines have been getting some nasty disease in Cornish gardens. No doubt yet another supposedly undiscovered phythopthera which will excite Defra.
The clump had, until last summer, an ilex oak growing around it. Now this has gone the taller trunks have shoots emerging lower down their stems.
So now travelling to the Isle of Wight with plenty of catalogue proofing and magazine articles to research and write up. The perfect ‘holiday’!
On the way I ponder the puzzle of Stewartia rostrata. An article in The Plantsman dated June 2008 shows pictures of the bark and flower of Stewartia rostrata.The 25 year old plant at Caerhays has similar bark, its seedpods have four capsules (as they should) but its flowers here are very different to those described by the three experts in the article.
None of the Caerhays plants nor those we have sold at Burncoose and flowered in the nursery for many years have small white flowers as shown in the article. Instead they are blotched pink in bud opening with pink blotches. The best and largest flowers of any of the stewartias in my opinion but no mention of this in the article.
Secondly the Caerhays plant has intense scarlet then almost black autumn colour. Rather better than described in Hillier’s who say autumn colour only in the most suitable growing conditions. Cornwall is hardly noted for its autumn colour or cold winters.
I have written to Koen Camelbeke, one of the authors, to ask his opinion and especially why our plants flower in late June and July and not in May as he suggests.
The puzzle does not stop there either.The plant here which we have always thought was Stewartia pseudocamellia appears to be Stewartia monodelpha in line with the appearance of its flaking bark. Our Stewartia sinensis does not have bark like the plant pictured and, at least in part, its bark is more like Stewartia monodelpha. Perhaps our elderly Stewartia pseudocamellia only has greenish bark with white and yellow peeled patches at certain times of the year or not as it ages?More research is needed but I am certain that the 25 to 30 year old Stewartia pseudocamellia at Burncoose at Burncoose by the mist houses has ruffled edges to its petals as it should. I now need to check its bark.
My tentative conclusion is that The Plantsman’s attempt to be definitive as to the pictures and descriptions of the key species may well not be as clear cut as the authors would like to believe.
1996 – FJW
Philip and I found a good flower on Camellia ‘Joan Trehane’.
1995 – FJW
We have had 5 very hot days and need rain.
1976 – FJW
Very dry – cut 2 fields of corn June 29th, baled them June 30th. First thunder today. Sinogrande under threat from the drought. (It was a drought).
1959 – FJW
Main hay crop gathered in. Moser’s Maroon flowering. A good Eriogynum hyb on the Hovel Cart Road.
1933 – JCW
Just back from North, am just going to see the [?] Fuschias as good this year.1932
Just as in 1927 apparently in every detail.
1927 – JCW
Came from Scotland, they have had good rain here, Griersonianum, Maddeni, Styrax wilsonii all very good. Many Magnolia parviflora open now. Azalea arborescens is well out for 4 small plants.
1925 – JCW
Came from Scotland, no rain for three weeks, dry but a real gain from the warmth and most things look well. Benthamias V.G, Rho griersonianum fine yet Rose brunonis and American Pillar excellent. The late Maddeni hybrids excellent. Dichroanthum several and so Maddeni. The two flowers of Eriogynum very good. Some Mag parviflora and hypoleuca, also delavayi.
1924 – JCW
The pink Moyesi, Styrax hemsleyanus, Discolor, and some Harrow hybrids are the best things open now.
1910 – JCW
Have been in Scotland for five weeks. R brunonis, Dracoena flowers and the Mitrarea are the best things open now. Some bulbs moved, nearly all the seed picked, our best year for this last.
1898 – JCW
Came from London after 3 weeks absence. Many Henonis [bamboo] only half grown, Nigra the same, waterlilies well on, no Nitida moving yet. Some of the tree ferns have only lately started, the best are at full length. Some Mitis [bamboo] well on, but these have held through the winter, 98 canes just starting.