2017 – CHW
The tour party visits Tregothnan for a very jolly trip around the arboretum and (of course) drinks in front of the house.
Acer pygnanthum in flower. Not seen before.
A chaotic gardening day with our weekend guests including the Stephenson Clarkes from Borde Hill and Koen Camelbeke from Arboretum Wespelaar who combined with a party from Tregothnan (am) and the Carew Poles (pm). The Carew Pole party included Tom Hudson, Maurice Foster and Jaimie Compton. So a plethora of horticultural experts to contend with and five and a half hours of garden tour. Someone had a pedometer and we covered nine kilometres in all. Quite a bit of champagne too and sixteen to lunch plus six for drinks.The michelia species question is now resolved; by the experts anyway. The three 1928 michelias above the greenhouse are now believed ALL to be forms of Michelia doltsopa and not Michelia floribunda or Michelia champaca as had been suggested by others. [Photo caption: What we thought were Michelia floribunda now identified as widely differing forms (to our other three) of Michelia doltsopa] Tom Hudson brought pieces of M floribunda in flower and, although the flower was pretty similar, as was the leaf and silvery underside to the leaf (slight difference), the crux of the argument was the length of the leaf petioles. Twenty centimetres in the case of M floribunda and fifty centimetres for M doltsopa, so case closed, these experts say.They also say that the yellow flowering Michelia floribunda at the top of the garden is ALSO a form of Michelia doltsopa and not M floribunda at all. So all seven of our enormous michelias are all the same species. Mighty odd that only one michelia species has survived 80 to 90 years here but there we are. Were they collected and named in China from different areas incorrectly to start with? Did the other seedlings of other species really all die out before maturity here? Why have so many new species of michelia been found in the last 30 years in China from the same places that Wilson and Forrest collected from? No one can answer that one!
Then, to cap it all, Maurice Foster says he believes the record tree Michelia doltsopa below Donkey Shoe is in fact Michelia manipurense which may or may not be a species in its own right or it may be a subspecies of M doltsopa. This he attributes to the velvety orange or purple indumentum on the undersides of the leaves which are quite pronounced on the leaves of this tree. This is a new one to us anyway and rather adds to the confusion rather than resolving it. Such are experts and what fun we all had.
Also going out are various crosses from seed obtained via the IMS seed list over several years and grown on at Caerhays. Most of these crosses are unnamed and perhaps we will get lucky with something genuinely new and different in the next decade. The planting lists and plans (to do in the summer) will make interesting reading and further research.
In all we placed out about 60 magnolias today and there is still an enormous amount of space for planting at the far end of Old Park.
1966 – FJW
End of fine week in Garden. Camp seedlings A.G xx ½, Penvergate xxx, Diva seed above Engine House xxxx, Mound seedlings xx, also crino hedge xx.
1959 – FJW
In middle of good plant up – 7 Albas and 5 Robustas above Rookery Path – 2 Albas and 2 Robustas above Hovel – 2 more Magnolias to go into the Beech Walk. Mosers Marson, Buergeanum and aberconwayii received from Hillier.
R lutescens and R argenteum are all very good. R sutchuenense ciliatum at their best. Camellia speciosa has been very good since Christmas, Ciliatum is very good. Barbatums are good. Magnolia denudata and a big Mag kobus show colour.
1926 – JCW
Could find bits of 40 Rhodo species, Corylopsis veitchiana at its best, others a week later. Camellia speciosa has been very good for some while. R ririei is very good now and has been open a month since January 28th.
1924 – JCW
A good deal of Ciliatum has been open and frosted. Daffodils much as above. Hippophaeoides is very nice. Big stuff had very few buds and then frosted. Osmanthus delavayi in the sun is good.
1909 – JCW
Much as in 1904, and a good few Jonquil’s open, also KA x Cyc. A good lot of Camellias, a few Arboreum show colour. No Ciliatum open the cold ( a fortnight of it) left us two days ago.
1904 – JCW
Sirius, Artemis and various seedling incomp open, Torch, I picked a bud of, King A shows colour, 337 is opening, a great move in a few days, Sirius open.
1898 – JCW
G mundi opens, also G of Leiden, several Van Thols and Graf tulips show colour. Golden Bell and Sirius out, half Emperor and Emprep only just, many seedling trumpets.
1897 – JCW
[?] open, Weardale, G of Leiden, C J Backhouse, Monarch, B conspicuus, all the Emperor and Emprep. Tulip gregii and most of the Van Thols.