Work is now underway making a new planting below the camellia foliage area for large leaf rhododendrons next spring. A well sheltered area in dappled shade which will remain damp in dry spells. A few very old Camellia japonicas are to go as well as some myrtles and a few trees have been upraised around about.
An early flower on Camellia sasanqua ‘Showa no sakae’.
The elderly pale pink Camellia sasanqua is nearly full out but no colour yet on the four others which are different colours.
2019 – CHW
A howling gale just coming up which may or may not be the tail end of the expected hurricane which the forecasters are uncertain about exactly when it will hit Cornwall. Bloody wet anyway and quite a bit of wind damage as we will see.A fine flower before the wind arrives on Magnolia grandiflora below the lawn.
Acer saccherinum, the silver maple, has five-lobed leaves. Many blown off without turning colour but just a hint of the true yellow one might get in a colder autumn.
An oak branch down which has hit the Maakia but not too badly. Both need tidying up.
Magnolia ‘Princess Margaret’ has keeled over even more and needs pollarding to survive. A clear split at the graft at ground level so it may well be ‘curtains’ anyway.
Schefflera pauciflora with now ripe seeds which Asia ought to gather with some put aside for when Paul calls here in late October.
Schefflera aff. myriocarpa beside it just about to flower exactly as it did this time last year. Odd how two separate species from one genus can perform so differently.
The last flower for this year, it would seem, on the excellent Magnolia grandiflora ‘Kay Parris’.
Ironically, 100 yards from the elderly beech with the splitting trunk which tree surgeons are currently removing for safety reasons, a much younger (60 to 70 year old) beech has also split in half. As usual two main leaders and, as you can see, water ingress into the trunk which has caused the collapse in the wind over last weekend. This had not happened by last Friday anyway. It fell away from the path so was no threat even if we had been open to the public. In a woodland garden you are never going to be able to predict occurrences like this however many tree surveys you undertake – short of felling everything over 15ft in height!
2018 – CHW
A last late flower on an elderly Rosa ‘Mermaid’ after at least four months of flowering.
And the very last poor flower for this season on Romneya coulteri on the front of the castle. What a show we have had here all summer. This plant really enjoyed the drought.
2017 – CHW
Guests were asking what the rhododendron full out on the drive was. I had not yet noticed but there is a rather full secondary display on Rhododendron ‘Norfolk Candy’. It may mean it is infected with honey fungus and is in its last throws of life. Its neighbour died in the summer. However another plant by ‘Georges Hut’ is full out too as I found out later.
The many seed pods on Rehderodendron macrocarpum are still not quite ripe enough to collect. Asia needs to keep an eye on them. Unusual for so much fruit on such a young tree.
2016 – CHW
James Garnett in Holland sent me pictures of Emmenopterys henryi which he saw flowering recently at Kalmthout in Holland. We looked at our plant last week which has shown no sign of flowering in 100 years; like nearly all other UK plants of this rare genus.
James also sent pictures of Meliosma parviflora which is not in our growing meliosma collection here which he saw during his visit. Both are amazing plants!
2015 – CHW
One forgets to look out for eucalyptus at this time of the year but I find a couple which were given to us as a present by I forget who. It might have been the podocarpus expert? Neither are in Hillier’s so I must assume that they are tender. One is in ‘New Trees’ as a relatively unknown and new Australian species and the other is renamed Eucalyptus nitida in ‘New Trees’.
Eucalyptus simmondsii (nitida) has particularly graceful leaves and is rather nicer than many grey leaved eucalyptus species.
Eucalyptus mannifera var praecox has exceptional peeling bark at a young age and nice foliage. It does look like an obvious casualty in a cold winter and was only planted in 2014. Amazing growth rate!
1999 – FJW
Wet but warm September. Sasanqua both pink and white well out.
1988 – FJW
Richard John Williams walked into the house.