8th 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

2020 – CHW

A trip along Sinogrande Walk.

Taxus baccata ‘Standishii’ – a female form of fastigiate holly which has yellowish new growth. Here with its first crop of berries that I have seen anyway. Planted 2008.

Taxus baccata ‘Standishii’
Taxus baccata ‘Standishii’
Myrtus ugni loaded with nearly ripe berries and one or two flowers still. The fruits were first visible four to six weeks ago.
Myrtus ugni
Myrtus ugni
Myrtus ugni
Myrtus ugni
Ilex aquifolium ‘Bacciflava’ with its berries just turning yellow. A small tree of 15x10ft now. Planted in 2008.
Ilex aquifolium ‘Bacciflava’
Ilex aquifolium ‘Bacciflava’
Ilex aquifolium ‘Bacciflava’
Ilex aquifolium ‘Bacciflava’

Now on down onto Bond Street – sadly nothing that I photographed appears on the planting plans.

This is a self or bird sown Ilex kingiana which has flopped over or been pushed over into the light by a nearby common holly. Some berries even on this young plant.

Ilex kingiana
Ilex kingiana
Ilex kingiana
Ilex kingiana
Sadly this holly got a bit singed by a bonfire earlier in the year. It has however made a good recovery with lots of new shoots. I think it is Ilex x koehneana ‘Chestnut Leaf’ as these pictures show (I hope).
Ilex x koehneana ‘Chestnut Leaf’
Ilex x koehneana ‘Chestnut Leaf’
Ilex x koehneana ‘Chestnut Leaf’
Ilex x koehneana ‘Chestnut Leaf’
This appears to be a young ailanthus species (from Crûg) which is doing well.
ailanthus species
ailanthus species

Then a nice surprise which I have missed out on in recent years. I remember planting out these three or four malus 25 or so years ago. They may have been from Westonbirt. Dullish plants with no labels then put in a not very often seen place. There are three very distinct and different forms of crab apples here. I assume they are all species if they did come from Westonbirt?

Left to right:

1. A rounded yellow fruit very similar to the Malus ‘Golden Hornet’ seen in Leslie Baker’s garden a week or so ago but with smaller crab apples.
yellow fruit
yellow fruit
yellow fruit
yellow fruit
2. Much more oblong or pear shaped crab apples which are yellow at first turning reddish. Large clusters of fruit on slightly cascading branches.
oblong or pear shaped
oblong or pear shaped
oblong or pear shaped
oblong or pear shaped
oblong or pear shaped
oblong or pear shaped
oblong or pear shaped
oblong or pear shaped
3. Small clusters of large round red fruits lower down and larger clusters higher up.
red fruits
red fruits
red fruits
red fruits
red fruits
red fruits
red fruits
red fruits
Could these all be forms of Malus x floribunda? Very doubtful. Is No. 3 Malus prunifolia? It certainly has ascending branches as it should and the crab apples do look the right size and shape. Is No. 2 Malus bhutanica (Malus toringoides)? Research suggests definitely not as the red fruits are rounded and the leaf shape is different. I am pretty sure I have photographed these three plants in flower in this diary and need to check. This may well help with identification. All suggestions from readers welcome.

2019 – CHW

Lots more new things which will very shortly appear on the Burncoose website and then in our new 2020 catalogue to be mailed just after Christmas.Styrax japonicus ‘Purple Dress’ is a very different colour to S.japonicus ‘Evening Light’ which is much blacker (and not purple) at this time of the year and with smaller leaves.

Styrax japonicus ‘Purple Dress’
Styrax japonicus ‘Purple Dress’
Styrax japonicus ‘Purple Dress’
Styrax japonicus ‘Purple Dress’
Genuinely weeping Styrax japonicus ‘Fragrant Fountain’ is new to us too. I must grab one for Caerhays before they all sell.
Styrax japonicus ‘Fragrant Fountain’
Styrax japonicus ‘Fragrant Fountain’
Styrax japonicus ‘Fragrant Fountain’
Styrax japonicus ‘Fragrant Fountain’
Cotinus coggyria ‘Lilla’ appears to be dwarfish in habit with bronze leaves that show a hint of red on the newer growth.
Cotinus coggyria ‘Lilla’
Cotinus coggyria ‘Lilla’
Cotinus coggyria ‘Lilla’
Cotinus coggyria ‘Lilla’
Yucca filamentosa ‘Ivory Towers’ is a startling colour combination.
Yucca filamentosa ‘Ivory Towers’
Yucca filamentosa ‘Ivory Towers’
Yucca filamentosa ‘Ivory Towers’
Yucca filamentosa ‘Ivory Towers’
As is Yucca flaccida ‘Color Guard’.
Yucca flaccida ‘Color Guard’
Yucca flaccida ‘Color Guard’
Yucca flaccida ‘Color Guard’
Yucca flaccida ‘Color Guard’
Not so sure Phormium tenax ‘Lemon Spritzer’ is really that much to write home about. Perhaps the new growth will be better next spring?
Phormium tenax ‘Lemon Spritzer’
Phormium tenax ‘Lemon Spritzer’
Phormium tenax ‘Lemon Spritzer’
Phormium tenax ‘Lemon Spritzer’
Astelia nervosa ‘Red Shadow’ is stunning. These all sold out very quickly last spring before I managed to photograph them properly.
Astelia nervosa ‘Red Shadow’
Astelia nervosa ‘Red Shadow’
Astelia nervosa ‘Red Shadow’
Astelia nervosa ‘Red Shadow’
2018 – CHW
The first berries on a young Viburnum setigerum which was a Wilson introduction. The berries go from yellow-orange to red when ripe.
Viburnum setigerum
Viburnum setigerum
Viburnum setigerum
Viburnum setigerum
The third elderly Camellia sasanqua, a white one, has burst into flower and is covered in bees and wasps seeking its nectar.
Camellia sasanqua
Camellia sasanqua
Camellia sasanqua
Camellia sasanqua
Camellia sasanqua ‘Variegata’ has a much larger flower with pinkish-red edging to its flowers.
Camellia sasanqua ‘Variegata’
Camellia sasanqua ‘Variegata’
Camellia sasanqua ‘Variegata’
Camellia sasanqua ‘Variegata’

2017 – CHW
As in previous years Clethra pringlei is the last of the clethras to flower. This plant was slow to get away and is clearly sensitive to cold but is now performing well.

Clethra pringlei
Clethra pringlei
Clethra pringlei
Clethra pringlei
Plenty of seed this year on Magnolia rostrata but is still is not ripe and I rather wonder if there actually are seeds in these huge pods.
Magnolia rostrata
Magnolia rostrata

2016 – CHW
Sad news. The recently registered (as new) Magnolia ‘Tropicana’ has split in half overnight. We have had a week of unusual strong south east winds which are mildish in temperature but strong enough to break much debris onto the drive and split a magnolia in full leaf. We will send cutting material to Burncoose tomorrow. I promised a review of the newer bamboo species and how they have progressed in a year since they were last photographed:Hibanobambusa tranquillans ‘Shiroshima’ had seemed a dwarf but is now racing away to 6ft. A very attractive variegated bamboo and one we must get for the nursery to stock. We could dig a few canes here soon.
Hibanobambusa tranquillans ‘Shiroshima’
Hibanobambusa tranquillans ‘Shiroshima’
Hibanobambusa tranquillans ‘Shiroshima’
Hibanobambusa tranquillans ‘Shiroshima’
Hibanobambusa tranquillans ‘Shiroshima’
Hibanobambusa tranquillans ‘Shiroshima’
Chusquea gigantea is clearly in too shady a place but is already 12ft or so after planting at a small size in 2011. This will be new in the 2017 catalogue.
Chusquea gigantea
Chusquea gigantea
Stewartia henryae has very striking red autumn colour and stands out in Kennel Close although only planted this year. Wrong place again I fear as too exposed for it to show off its autumn colour well later in life.
Stewartia henryae
Stewartia henryae
Stewartia henryae
Stewartia henryae
Fargesia utilis – supposedly the largest growing species of fargesia which is fully hardy but here the leaves are often blown off in winter with no ill effect next year.
Fargesia utilis
Fargesia utilis
Fargesia utilis
Fargesia utilis
Fargesia rufa (syn Fargesia dracocephala ‘Green Panda’ according to Hillier’s) seems to grow to about 10ft and is spreading vigorously.
Fargesia rufa
Fargesia rufa
Fargesia rufa
Fargesia rufa
Chimonobambusa tumidissinoda – this one will be in the Burncoose 2017 catalogue. An extraordinary layered spreading habit. Easily the most shapely and attractive of these six new ones. The canes are used in China as walking sticks.
Chimonobambusa tumidissinoda
Chimonobambusa tumidissinoda
Chimonobambusa tumidissinoda
Chimonobambusa tumidissinoda
Fargesia robusta is as its name implies although only planted (as all these were) in 2011. It will, and already is, breaking some underdraft.
Fargesia robusta
Fargesia robusta
Fargesia robusta
Fargesia robusta

I see on the plan that I have missed the seventh one – Himalayacalmus falconeri. This has grown poorly and only two survive from the original clump of three or five. This lot are more exposed to wind but the survivors seem fine today.I think I am sick of new bamboo species and their bizarre unpronounceable names so I will spare you pictures of the dozen or so other new ones planted this spring. At least the fucking deer do not eat bamboo! Much evidence of new nibbling all over this area.

2015 – CHW

A very happy two and a half hours collecting and swapping seed with Tom Hudson. We inspected the following styrax and collected seed from most of them:

Styrax odoratissimus (veitchiorum) (above greenhouse) – very different to Tom’s

Styrax serrulatus (by Magnolia Atlas)
Styrax hookeri (several mature plants – Rockery, Slip Rail, Georges Hut)

Styrax hookeri (1)
Styrax hookeri
Styrax hookeri (2)
Styrax hookeri
Styrax hookeri (3)
Styrax hookeri

Styrax obassia (Drive and Bond Street – old plant at Crino Hedge nearly dead)Styrax formosanus var formosanus (above Crino Hedge in new planting)

Styrax japonicus ‘Fargesi’ (above Crino Hedge in new planting)

Styrax japonicus (old plant on Burns Bank)

Styrax wuyuanensis (above Crino Hedge in new planting)

Styrax faberi (above Crino Hedge in new planting)

Styrax japonicus var hayatiana (perhaps formosanus var hayatiana – there is one in Kennel Close and one above Crinodendron Hedge)

Styrax hemsleyanus (above Crino Hedge in new planting)

Styrax officinalis (above Crino Hedge in new planting – one survivor from two planted?)

Styrax shiraianus (Burns Bank – small plant)

We did not find Styrax wilsoni or Styrax dasyanthus on our travels. The former may have died out but I remember planting several seedlings. Our original plants of Styrax hookeri and Styrax hemsleyanus have been dead for some time by Charles Michaels Nursery. I think we have also planted out a Styrax confusus and perhaps Styrax calvescens.

Clearly there are several more species to hunt for to add to our collection: Styrax suberifolius, Styrax redivivus, Styrax platanifolius, Styrax limprichitii.

Tom very kindly gave us plants as follows:

Lapageria (pink) x 1

Quercus lomboldtii boadta x 1

Magnolia cathcartii 13215 x 3

Styrax 2975 x 3

Styrax 1390 x 3

And seeds as follows:

Styrax confusus TH2200 from Lu Shan Jiangxi

Magnolia sprengeri (shell pink) TH2823 from Leigon Shan, Guizhan

Rhododendron yuetengense TH2785 from Maoer Shan

Styrax limprichtii 2+F Coll Erhalpk Dalai Yunnan

Pterostyrax psilophyllus var leveillei

Camellia yunnanesis yunnanense TH452

1920 – JCW
Returned from Scotland, a great rhododendron year. Martin’s seedling rhodo’s quite unbeaten by anything I have ever seen. Hydrangeas very nice.

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