6th October

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

2023 – CHW

The final grass cut in Kennel Close.

final grass cut in Kennel Close
final grass cut in Kennel Close
Jaimie has spotted the first flowers out on the second of the ancient white Camellia sasanquas. He also took some better pictures of the dark pink one. So 3 of the 5 ancient sasanquas have flowered in September and the fourth in the first days of October. The fifth is always a little later.
Camellia sasanqua
Camellia sasanqua
Camellia sasanqua
Camellia sasanqua
The first time we have ever flowered the South African Halleria lucida outside at Caerhays. Not a great show as yet but highly unusual. No flowers yet coming directly from the trunk as they can do. Seeds forming as well.
Halleria lucida
Halleria lucida
Halleria lucida
Halleria lucida
Halleria lucida
Halleria lucida
One forgets quite how large the seed heads are on Camellia reticulata.
Camellia reticulata
Camellia reticulata
Hedychium maximum (BSWJ 8261a) just coming out. A huge flower spike and very late into the Hedychium season.
Hedychium maximum (BSWJ 8261a)
Hedychium maximum (BSWJ 8261a)

2022 – CHW
Now that I have in the garden library the very excellent ‘New Zealand Native Trees’ by Dawson and Lucas, with a host of good pictures, I can have another look at our Prumnopitys plants.This is one of our Prumnopitys taxifolia’s. It looks largely dead today and more of a shrub than a coniferors tree. This is however only its (lengthy) juvenile stage and, instead of drooping twiglets at the top of the plant as now, it will eventually develop a leading trunk and grow into a very long lined evergreen tree.

Prumnopitys taxifolia
Prumnopitys taxifolia
Prumnopitys taxifolia
Prumnopitys taxifolia
Prumnopitys taxifolia
Prumnopitys taxifolia
Prumnopitys taxifolia
Prumnopitys taxifolia
This tree had been acquired as Prumnopitys taxifolia and is still labelled as such. It is clearly not Prumnopitys andina (Podocarpus andinus) from South America nor is it Prumnopitys ferruginea, the other New Zealand species of Prumnopitys, according to the reference books. It is clearly a Podocarpus and very probably Podocarpus acutifolius. In its juvenile form it is not an exact match for the elderly P. acutifolius in the Auklandii Garden in its current leaf form but the way that that bark is peeling at the base on this young tree does match our mature plant.
Podocarpus acutifolius
Podocarpus acutifolius
Podocarpus acutifolius
Podocarpus acutifolius
Podocarpus acutifolius
Podocarpus acutifolius
Podocarpus acutifolius
Podocarpus acutifolius

So, of the three species of Prumnopitys we may well have only one. This explains my confusion at a recent visit to Tregrehan and looking at their two New Zealand species; P. taxifolia and P. ferruginea. Neither are listed as being included in our National Collection of Podocarpaceae.

We will eventually have to cut back the plants beside these two trees to give them room to become trees which was not that obvious when we planted them 15 years ago. There is another Prumnopitys taxifolia above Hovel Cart Road with more room at the end of the Podocarpus windbreak here.

2021 – CHW
A trip to Tregrehan where I made the cardinal sin of confusing Camellia oleifera with Camellia taliensis as I have in this diary for many years. My father before me too. Our elderly plants are C. taliensis and not C. oleifera and hence my surprise at the appearance of Tom’s C. oleifera. Just one of those gardening things! I remain an amateur with professionals like Tom!

Asia and I went to collect another (second) set of camellia species cuttings to go with those collected in October 2018. A full list of the cuttings taken can be seen at the end of this entry. From the October 2018 cuttings we have grown on about a dozen new species to Caerhays.

Seed heads forming on Camellia tuberculata.

Camellia tuberculata
Camellia tuberculata
Flowers on Magnolia ‘Nimbus’ (Magnolia obovata from Japan crossed with Magnolia virginiana from USA). Gorgeous scent. I think we have this somewhere but I never expected flowers in October. Well worth growing!
Magnolia ‘Nimbus’
Magnolia ‘Nimbus’
Magnolia ‘Nimbus’
Magnolia ‘Nimbus’
Magnolia ‘Nimbus’
Magnolia ‘Nimbus’
Lapageria rosea growing up a Magnolia campbellii – a quite superb mix and a very dark red form of L. rosea.
Lapageria rosea
Lapageria rosea
Lapageria rosea
Lapageria rosea
Huge fruits on Camellia xylocarpa.
Camellia xylocarpa
Camellia xylocarpa
Winged fruits on Euonymus clivicola (which Tom had thought was Euonymus cornutus before being put right).
Euonymus clivicola
Euonymus clivicola
Euonymus clivicola
Euonymus clivicola
Magnolia megaphylla from Vietnam – very tender! Tom kindly gave us a rooted cutting. Gorgeous golden indumentum on the young stems and huge old leaves. Tom grew this in the greenhouse but has now planted it out at circa 12ft tall a year or so ago in full shade and shelter.
Magnolia megaphylla
Magnolia megaphylla
Magnolia megaphylla
Magnolia megaphylla
Magnolia megaphylla
Magnolia megaphylla
Camellia hongkongensis – very tender with blackish new growth and blueish undersides to the new leaves.
Camellia hongkongensis
Camellia hongkongensis
Camellia hongkongensis
Camellia hongkongensis
Camellia hongkongensis
Camellia hongkongensis
The true Camellia granthamiana. Our Caerhays (white) and Burncoose (pink) plants are clearly not the true species with huge white egg shaped flowers. Tom’s original plant is in his greenhouses.
Camellia granthamiana
Camellia granthamiana
Camellia granthamiana
Camellia granthamiana
Lithocarpus brevicaudatus – we will try cuttings (a gift from Thomas Methuen-Campbell to Tom originally and growing well).
Lithocarpus brevicaudatus
Lithocarpus brevicaudatus
Lithocarpus brevicaudatus
Lithocarpus brevicaudatus
Castanopsis eyrie – huge older leaves before the new growth (also from seed via Thomas Methuen-Campbell).
Castanopsis eyrie
Castanopsis eyrie
Castanopsis eyrie
Castanopsis eyrie
Castanopsis eyrie
Castanopsis eyrie
Litsea moupinense – another very vigorous new species.
Litsea moupinense
Litsea moupinense
Litsea moupinense
Litsea moupinense
Roedeer nibbling of the fresh new growth of a large clump of Rhododendron yeufengense.
Rhododendron yeufengense
Rhododendron yeufengense
Rhododendron yeufengense
Rhododendron yeufengense
Clerodendron oxyphyllum nearly in flower. Disgusting scent to the leaves when crushed.
Clerodendron oxyphyllum
Clerodendron oxyphyllum
Clerodendron oxyphyllum
Clerodendron oxyphyllum
The true Camellia oleifera.
Camellia oleifera
Camellia oleifera
Camellia oleifera
Camellia oleifera
Schefflera macrophylla glowing in the evening sun. Flowers not yet quite out. 20-25ft tall plants.
Schefflera macrophylla
Schefflera macrophylla
Camellia minor with seed heads (this one not listed in the Chinese species book).
Camellia minor
Camellia minor

I see that the summer flowering Camellia azalea hybrid, ‘1001 Summer Nights Jasmine’, is available after its Chelsea debut for £49.99 from Thompson & Morgan. Tom and I agree we will not be rushing to get one.

Camellia list:
C. tuberculosa
C. xylocarpa
C. japonica (from Korea – BSWJ 5906)
C. parvilimba
C. hongkongensis
C. granthamiana
C. crapnelliana
C. flaviolatus
C. chengii
C. cordifolia
C. tunganii
C. sinensis assamica
C. strictoclada (C. strictocarpa?)
C. oleifera – East China
C. vietnamensis
C. minor
C. bailingschanica (two forms with different coloured flowers)

2020 – CHW
A fine secondary flowering as usual on Rhododendron ‘Yellow Hammer’.

Rhododendron ‘Yellow Hammer’
Rhododendron ‘Yellow Hammer’
Hoheria populnea flowering well but very high up on the tree.
Hoheria populnea
Hoheria populnea
We are back to the two clumps of two ilex which are at least or around 100 years old and for which the identification is still uncertain. They are so tall that we need binoculars to see if there are any green berries. I suspect they are Ilex hookeri or Ilex dipyrena. The juvenile foliage is described as very spiny on I. dipyrena but of course there is not any. These pictures may again help with a final certain identification. It may be that the berries are what will complete the identification and Jaimie will try to cut a twig which may have berries with the long handled pruners. In the 1966 tree measuring schedule these ilex are listed as Ilex insignis and the identical two have Forrest numbers 25424 and 25362. I. insignis is no longer a recognised specie name.
Ilex hookeri or Ilex dipyrena
Ilex hookeri or Ilex dipyrena
Ilex hookeri or Ilex dipyrena
Ilex hookeri or Ilex dipyrena
Ilex hookeri or Ilex dipyrena
Ilex hookeri or Ilex dipyrena
Ilex hookeri or Ilex dipyrena
Ilex hookeri or Ilex dipyrena
The tender Callicarpa psilocalyx is about to flower. I do not think I have seen this before.
Callicarpa psilocalyx
Callicarpa psilocalyx
Callicarpa dichotoma also nearly out.
Callicarpa dichotoma
Callicarpa dichotoma
Nice autumn colour developing on Cercis chinensis ‘Avondale’ in the Isla Rose Plantation.
Cercis chinensis ‘Avondale’
Cercis chinensis ‘Avondale’

I attach a list of the ilex species collected by George Forrest on various expeditions to China derived from my father’s notes. Remembering that JCW asked Forrest to find him ‘nice evergreens’ instead of (just) rhododendrons in the early 1920s it is likely that we still have original Forrest plants here of Ilex dipyrena, Ilex bioritsensis (Ilex pernyi var. veitchii or perhaps I. pernyi to Forrest) and Ilex kingiana (although Forrest does not use this name on his earlier trips). Those species which have died out here over the years but which were probably original Forrest introductions include Ilex corallina* (measured here in 1960s), Ilex cytura, Ilex yunnanensis*, Ilex fargesii and Ilex georgei (which I replaced but that too has died). (* = replaced more recently)

The name changes over the last hundred years since Forrest’s time make this the sort of complex botanical puzzle which I simply do not have the time (or botanical knowledge) to unravel further.

2019 – CHW
Outside Edwina’s house in the village is a Cotoneaster bullatus producing a fine show of berries.
Cotoneaster bullatus
Cotoneaster bullatus
Ross has felled the other half of the youngish beech tree which split in half last Sunday. Not too much mess!
youngish beech tree
youngish beech tree
youngish beech tree
youngish beech tree
The last elderly 120 year old beech tree has also been felled in the new clearance by Higher Quarry Nursery. The trunk was fairly rotten as you can see.
elderly 120 year old beech tree
elderly 120 year old beech tree
elderly 120 year old beech tree
elderly 120 year old beech tree
The tree stump of the young beech (70 or so years old) was however not rotten at all.
tree stump
tree stump
2018 – CHW
Asia found seeds on one of our four young 10 year old Cephalotaxus fortunei. This proves that we have one female plant and probably three male ones. Certainly we noticed that the flowers were rather different on what we then thought were male as opposed to female plants. The seed capsules themselves do not look like the date plum, which is the common name for Cephalotaxus, but when you strip out the seed itself it certainly does look like a ‘date plum’.
Cephalotaxus fortunei
Cephalotaxus fortunei
Cephalotaxus fortunei
Cephalotaxus fortunei
As smallish slow worm found in the garden.
slow worm
slow worm
slow worm
slow worm

2017 – CHW
The new sales point and shop is rising up from the ground.
new sales point
new sales point
Lithocarpus pachyphyllus has huge seeds again this year.
Lithocarpus pachyphyllus
Lithocarpus pachyphyllus

2016 – CHW
A few more new plants for the 2017 Burncoose catalogue.Fagus longipetiolata is as its name implies. Two incorrectly named plants in the garden here.
Fagus longipetiolata
Fagus longipetiolata
Fagus longipetiolata
Fagus longipetiolata
Ilex altaclarensis ‘Sunny Foster’ has an unusual appearance and is quite nice although who Foster was and why he felt ‘sunny’ I have no idea!
Ilex altaclarensis ‘Sunny Foster’
Ilex altaclarensis ‘Sunny Foster’
Ilex altaclarensis ‘Sunny Foster’
Ilex altaclarensis ‘Sunny Foster’
Hammamelis x intermedia ‘Rubin’ is a new (German) cultivar with red flowers. Although the leaves are full out there are a few tiny yellow flowers which I must assume are errant secondary ones. Somewhat dwarf habit so I must assume not wrongly named.
Hammamelis x intermedia ‘Rubin’
Hammamelis x intermedia ‘Rubin’

2015 – CHW
The Garden Society dinner at Brooks Club where I showed the members the three forms of Photinia villosa (see last week) all with berries and also Photinia macrophylla.

An excellent Photinia bretschneideri was also shown. A good display of varied autumn colour plants but very few seeds for the members to fight over afterwards. Ten years ago they had to wait while the Queen Mother filled her large handbag first. Also today a visit to the RHS to sort out plans for the Rhododendron, Camellia & Magnolia Group’s stand at Chelsea next year. Progress!

Photinia villosa var koreana
Photinia villosa var koreana
Photinia villosa var zolingeri
Photinia villosa var zolingeri
Photinia villosa var laevis
Photinia villosa var laevis

1943 – CW
Fuchsias and lapagerias good. Very few auriculatum hybrids left – Yellowhammer picked a bunch for Aunt Charlotte. Three vases of Royal Flush in hall. Many small bits of rhodo but little to pick. Both forms of Magnolia grandiflora have many flowers. Camellia sasanqua (white) by stables in full bloom. A very wet September and brambles bad.

1910 – JCW
Back from Scotland. Cyclamen, lapageria and roses are all nice also Romneya, but Clematis paniculata is the best thing. Solanums and cassia are also fairly good, also the hydrangeas.

One thought on “6th October

  1. Podocarpus acutifolius has quite narrow, acute leaves, so this it is not. All plants I saw did not have an upright stem and regular branching, but were growing somewhat succumbed, even after more than thirty years and up to 1.9 m tall. Some colour their leaves during winter yellowish-coppery and retain this into summer. With the number of species and varying leave-forms it is difficult to specify; it is but a small-leaved podocarp with straight upright growth.
    Prumnopitys andina grows very well in Germany, it can be a replacement for yew with brighter, slightly geyish leaves.
    ’21 One rarly sees so many flowers on a Lapageria and then growing in the garden, out.

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