26th March

FJ Williams Profile Picture
FJW 1955-2007
CH Williams Profile Picture
CHW 2015-
JC Williams Profile Picture
JCW 1897-1939
C Williams Profile Picture
CW 1940-1955

2018 – CHW

A garden tour in the evening with Evelyn Boscawen and Jonathon Jones. Jonathon literally just back from Canada and off the plane with no coat. Raining and cold.

Stachyurus praecox ‘Joy Forever’. S. praecox has shorter and chubbier flower tassels than Stachyurus chinensis. Flowering properly here for the first time. The leaves are yellow variegated.

Stachyurus praecox ‘Joy Forever’
Stachyurus praecox ‘Joy Forever’
Stachyurus praecox ‘Joy Forever’
Stachyurus praecox ‘Joy Forever’
Magnolia sprengeri ‘Diva’ was, thankfully, having a year off from flowering this year but a couple of solitary buds are about to open and appear undamaged.
Magnolia sprengeri ‘Diva’
Magnolia sprengeri ‘Diva’
Magnolia sprengeri ‘Diva’
Magnolia sprengeri ‘Diva’
Prunus ‘Collingwood Ingram’ flowering for the first time here. A seedling of Prunus kursar but with much darker flowers. Raised in Belgium in 1979 and named in honour of Captain Collingwood Ingram who was the introducer of many Japanese cherries to UK cultivation.
Prunus ‘Collingwood Ingram’
Prunus ‘Collingwood Ingram’
Prunus ‘Collingwood Ingram’
Prunus ‘Collingwood Ingram’
Rhododendron gongshanense flowering for the first time that I have noticed here anyway. The pocket guide to rhodo species has no picture of a flower but says that the flowers are red? Not listed in Hillier’s. A recent introduction by the Cox family. The original label reads Rhododendron gongashanense which is presumably our spelling error or is this another species? The leaves look correct as far as the pocket guide goes. Another welcome new addition to the species collection.
Rhododendron gongshanense
Rhododendron gongshanense
Rhododendron gongshanense
Rhododendron gongshanense
Rhododendron gongshanense
Rhododendron gongshanense
Camellia x williamsii ‘Ladys Maid’ has attractive delicate flowers that hang down from its dense foliage. USA origin but well worth its place here. Makes a robust hedge/windbreak.
Camellia x williamsii ‘Ladys Maid’
Camellia x williamsii ‘Ladys Maid’
Camellia x williamsii ‘Ladys Maid’
Camellia x williamsii ‘Ladys Maid’
Two young plants of Camellia reticulata ‘Captain Rawes’ are nicely out now as our three old plants are nearly dead below The Pound. Stripped of most leaves in the wind I doubt they will now recover.
Camellia reticulata ‘Captain Rawes’
Camellia reticulata ‘Captain Rawes’
Camellia reticulata ‘Captain Rawes’
Camellia reticulata ‘Captain Rawes’
Rhododendron praestans just emerging on Sinogrande Walk. The colour fades to creamy white and becomes less exciting. Another plant on Rookery Path which is not showing yet.
Rhododendron praestans
Rhododendron praestans

2017 – CHW
Another sunny day. Only the third here for the whole month when I think about it.

Rhododendron ‘Praecox’ is flowering much more profusely than usual and a very good form.

Rhododendron ‘Praecox’
Rhododendron ‘Praecox’
Rhododendron ‘Praecox’
Rhododendron ‘Praecox’
Rhododendron ‘Praecox’
Rhododendron ‘Praecox’
The Magnolia dawsoniana seedling outside the front arch is at its best.
Magnolia dawsoniana
Magnolia dawsoniana
Magnolia dawsoniana
Magnolia dawsoniana
Magnolia dawsoniana
Magnolia dawsoniana
Magnolia x loebneri ‘Wildcat’. Although a much smaller plant than the ‘Powder Puff’ we saw yesterday is the flower really that different? Just as nice but perhaps the flowers do not open out quite as much and perhaps not quite so many tepals?
Magnolia x loebneri ‘Wildcat’
Magnolia x loebneri ‘Wildcat’
Magnolia x loebneri ‘Wildcat’
Magnolia x loebneri ‘Wildcat’
Rhododendron canadense (dark form) just coming out. We planted three Rhododendron cumberlandense (another US species) alongside it last week.
Rhododendron canadense (dark form)
Rhododendron canadense (dark form)
Rhododendron canadense (dark form)
Rhododendron canadense (dark form)
The vile racist discrimination against Spanish bluebells is misplaced as I have said often before.
Here are a few half castes nearby which are nice enough too.
half castes
half castes
half castes
half castes
This supposedly dwarf growing forsythia on the lawn was given to me to treasure and propagate by a very elderly gardener who had selected it from a batch of seedlings which he had grown as a forsythia breeder. It was at least 30 years ago and it is very dwarfish as you can see although whether it is indeed worth a name is anyone’s guess? We should propagate anyway. I must check the planting records for more information on the grower.
dwarf growing forsythia
dwarf growing forsythia
dwarf growing forsythia
dwarf growing forsythia

2016 – CHW
A ghastly day of high wind and constant rain. Not a day for photography or the garden Easter egg hunt organised for visiting children. The wind is SW so not too much damage to the magnolias in the aftermath. It is going to be a very poor visitor weekend which will cost us dearly in revenue terms.

2015 – CHW
Garden tour with Anna Lisa De’Ath, editor of Land Love magazine, and some shooting clients/friends who appear with their new two year old labrador bitch. This is too much for our six male dog pack in spring and the tour is disrupted by mass (attempted) rape while the bitch runs for cover toppling the owners and everyone else in the process.  Below the Magnolia veitchii the orgy has to be ended.  Not sure if this is what Land Love magazine is all about or whether dogs or plants will get a mention. Photography censored.
MAGNOLIA Vulcan
MAGNOLIA ‘Vulcan’

Magnolia ‘Vulcan’  is hardly showing colour at Caerhays but is full out at Burncoose as Anna Lisa gets the full love in tour. In New Zealand ‘Vulcan’ is a large erect flower with a reddish hue and is as well thought of as ‘Lanarth’. In the UK it is slow growing with a unique rose like flower from which the tepals uncurl. It is also a light-medium pink as it opens darkening later.For years there has been debate about whether the New Zealander’s had muddled the labelling on the plants sent to the UK. However the plant at Burncoose is now starting to get ‘true’ flowers at the very top of the plant and others are experiencing this too. So current thinking is that the New Zealand ozone hole and/or the tribulations of transporting the plants 12,000 miles bare rooted has caused this discrepancy in the plants’ performance between the two hemispheres. This is not the same issue as with New Zealand ‘Lanarth’ and New Zealand campbellii ‘Alba’ set against the true forms mentioned earlier!

1997 – FJW
First two days of rain since about March 3rd and least good this year have been the Camellias.

1988 – FJW
Very mild winter continues – Magnolia veitchii out – Oaks, Nothofagus Procera, some acers in leaf. Open day 1320 people came – warm fine day in defiance of prophecy. Bad mildew in heart of wood. Bulldozer done.

1967 – FJW
Most of the above had been planted out permanently by this date.

1960 – FJW
1st of our new Rho seedlings planted out in Orchid House nursery.

1951 – CW
Magnolia Diva about its best, also big Robustas and most of young ones. Large Mollicomata not out but others at their best. Campbellii the same but later than Robusta. Daffodils late and ground very wet, still hail showing. Blood Reds going over, also some of Saluenensis hybrids. Pink Auklandii hybrids coming out. Ririei still nice. Michelia only just showing colour. Lutescens very fine for weeks and ciliatum. One Lapageria flower.

1924 – JCW
This is very near 1914. The best Rhodo’s are the Hippophaeoides set but frost and the cold of May 1923 leaves bare of Rhodo bloom. Rho fargesii is very good.

1914 – JCW
R barbatum going over, also some Thomsonii x Arboreum hybrids. Mrs Butler x Arboreums are very good. Daffs have been much knocked about, show is in four days time. Many Reticulatas open, Lady Clare is going over. R calophytum from Coombe Wood opens. Pyrus caloneura open.

1902 – JCW
Jacko open and all the above without forcing but it is cold and slow weather.

1901 – JCW
The above show colour except G Bell, have picked a C J Backhouse.

1900 – JCW
Have put under glass to open Emperor, Empress, Horsfieldii, Victoria, G Bell as all showing colour.

One thought on “26th March

  1. Charles,
    Enjoyed your diary, looking forward to reading the early entries. Sky bracing herself for the next encounter in October!
    Alan and Eileen

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