2019 – CHW
Flowering male catkins on Sinowilsonia henryi. The female catkins are in pendant racemes but none are visible yet. I have never seen catkins on this smallish spreading tree before. This is a very rare Wilson introduction and is related to Hamamelis.
First full out leaves on a sycamore.
Our first ever flower here on a young Melliodendron xylocarpum. We have planted about half a dozen plants out in recent years but nearly all have failed to survive which is maddening. Hopefully this one and a couple of others will now develop into smallish erect trees. Tom Hudson’s plant is in full shade on a steep bank. Perhaps ours were in too much sun to start with? The rarer the plant the more difficult it is to get it going.
2018 – CHW
Another fine planting day after yesterday’s deluge. We still however need another day to finally complete this year’s planting programme. Still the Drive to do and Old Park. The odds and ends take rather longer to sort out and carry around than the main new planting areas.Attached is a list of the latest influx of plants from Burncoose and other nurseries. Some large enough to plant out, while some need growing on for another year or more in the greenhouse.Another load of plants from the frames ready to go out.
A rest from magnolias!Some tiny flowered narcissi by the side door – nice scent.
2016 – CHW
The bluebells are coming on well outside the front gate.
Magnolia x loebneri ‘Wildcat’ has two flowers. Its second flowering. ‘Wildcat’ is a huge advance on x loebneri ‘Donna’ which now looks dull by comparison but a larger and floppier flower than Magnolia x loebneri ‘Mags Pirouette’ which is, I think, the best selection from a very good bunch to grace any smaller garden.
A distance shot from the front door of the magnolia above the wall (see yesterday).
The story of Magnolia sargentiana (pure) is an odd one. The original plant at Caerhays has flowered only once, in 2012, when it had narrow extremely floppy tepals which hung down from the flower. It flowered on just one branch. It had not flowered before in my father’s or my lifetime but, when it did, the flowers were exactly as depicted in the watercolour in George Johnstone’s 1950s book on magnolias. We purchased from Eisenhut Magnolia sargentiana pure thinking it was from scions we had supplied and planted it in pride of place where the original Magnolia sprengeri ‘Diva’ had died. Hillier Manual (2014 edition) continues to describe the flowers of Magnolia sargentiana as upright, cup shaped and like ‘large water lilies’. John Hillier observed the new plant in 2013 at an early flowering and confirmed the flower was exactly like the plants in the Hillier arboretum of Magnolia sargentiana pure. Clearly this can now be demonstrated to be a huge and enduring case of mistaken identity. The real flowers of Magnolia sargentiana pure are not even faintly like a water lily although the ‘rogue’ is very nice indeed and well worth a name in its own right which should probably be ‘Caerhays Water Lily’ to amuse future generations. However Jaimie says it is actually Philip Tregunna.
1988 – FJW
Gales after 6 dry warm weeks – Magnolias first class but ruined today.
1919 – JCW
Rhodo’s much as in 1917 it may be a bit further on, daffodils well ahead with a good bulge on the bud of our early poets (red and white). Prunus conradinae is over. Subhirtella not yet open.
1917 – JCW
Not a yellow bud in the Tin Garden, the first Caerhays opened yesterday. The following Rhodo’n species open or show colour – barbatum, davidii, sutchuenense, moupinense, scabrifolium, lutescens, argeteum, arboreum, irroratum (only just), mucronulatum. Cerasus conradinae just opening.
1914 – JCW
One Cam reticulata on wall by Library. R argenteum and most arboreums at their best. Some trumpets but a few incomps open. The best white Arboreum is hardly open. Barbatums well on, a few P Mary.
1913 – JCW
A few reticulata, and bad ones, open. We have nearly reached the poets in daffodils. Ciliatums going over, the best white Arboreum is well out, some Barbatums over some partly out – half the Tin Garden P Mary open.
1908 – JCW
We are just as in 1902 bar the Reticulata.
1906 – JCW
We are distinctly ahead of 1903. R shilsoni on the wane, White Queen fit to force for pollen. Many reticulatas open.
1904 – JCW
Rather later, say five days, than in 1903.
1903 – JCW
Sir Watkins, Emperor, Horsfieldii, 116, Artemis all out and Princep Mary, Albatross, Seagull, Caerhays, G Spur, H Irving, Maximus and Victoria at their best, King A, Sirius, G Bell and RRB well out. [?] at their best and so are R wilsonii, barbatum and most of the arboreums.
1902 – JCW
Sir Watkin open, some Artemis (23), Maximus nearly all, Caerhays nearly all also G Spur, some few Reticulata and Ciliatum. Picked the first Southern Star, many Victoria out.
1901 – JCW
An odd Victoria open, 23 nearly open, one Ciliatum early seedling, but hardly any of the above are even near opening.
1899 – JCW
Very few Sir Watkins open, a few K Spurrell, Horsfieldii, Emperor, 116, several 23, maximus going over. Caerhays at its best, also G Spur, no ciliatum or reticulata properly open.