Archive | April, 2008

Letter from America

26. April 2008

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Hi Debbie, Is now late morning on Friday 25th April and this is the first time I have had a chance to actually sit down at my laptop. Like the good old UK – the weather here is very unpredictable. I am staying at a well known nursery in this neck of the woods called […]

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Climate Change in US gardens

13. April 2008

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Climate Change in US gardens

One of my biggest inspirations for exotic plants is The Exotic Garden in Norwich. Created by its owner, Will Giles, this is a hidden oasis of tropical and exotic plants from all over the world located right in the centre of Norwich – in fact it is just down the road from Delia Smith’s beloved […]

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Mediterranean Scene

12. April 2008

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Mediterranean Scene

Here are just a few flower pictures from my trip to Calabria in Italy. The pink messembryanthemum are particularly good for underplanting. In the right hand picture they are used beneath some impressive architectural Agave plants – the dramatic spiky green leaves of the Agave provide a sharp contrast to the bright flowers .This is […]

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Arum Lily, Calla Lily

10. April 2008

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Arum Lily, Calla Lily

Latin name: Zantedeschia aethiopica ‘Green Goddess’ Description: Highly attractive lily with large, lush, lustrous green arrow-shaped leaves. The flowers appear at the top of tall stalks from spring into early summer and are in the form of a modified leaf called a spathe, enfolding a fleshy yellow spike. ‘Green Goddess’ is a very desirable cultivar […]

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Wandering Jew, Inch Plant

10. April 2008

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Wandering Jew, Inch Plant

Latin name: Tradescantia fluminensis Description: Ludicrously tropical house-plant that is well worth trying in your garden. These wonderful trailing houseplants come in a dazzling range of colours and variegations, so the world is your Oyster. Plant out after the last frosts, usually in May. Hardiness: Although considered ludicrously tender, they don’t seem to know that! […]

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Star Jasmin

10. April 2008

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Star Jasmin

Latin name: Trachelospermum jasminoides Description: Hailing from China, this fine evergreen climber is much tougher than you might think. The dense foliage is composed of rich, dark, glossy privet like leaves up to 5cm long. In summer loose clusters of windmill shaped, jasmine-like, sweetly scented, creamy white flowers are produced in abundance from early to […]

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Bird of Paradise, Crane Flower

10. April 2008

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Bird of Paradise, Crane Flower

Latin name: Strelitzia reginae Description: This must be one of the best known plants in the world, so why not try one in your garden! It is an evergreen, clump-forming perennial with long stalked, tough, leathery, blue-green leaves. The large beak-like flowers have three brilliant orange sepals and three vivid purple-blue petals in boat-shaped red-edged […]

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Purple Roscoea

10. April 2008

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Purple Roscoea

Latin name: Roscoea purpurea Description: These are relatively small members of the ginger family and deserve to be more widely grown as they are exceedingly attractive when in flower as well as leaf. They are tuberous rooted perennials, thriving in cool shady conditions. Roscoea Purpurea is a popular species with lance-shaped, deep green leaves up […]

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Castor Oil Plant, Castor Bean Plant

10. April 2008

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Castor Oil Plant, Castor Bean Plant

Latin name: Ricinus communis ‘Carmencita’ Description: Very easy and essential exotic annual. Branching shrub that can grow to staggering proportions in one season. Sown in April it will reach 2m by late summer with large Fatsia-like, dark bronze-purple leaves 30cm and more wide. From summer to autumn produces clusters of small flowers followed by spikes […]

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Cape Fuchsia, Cape Figwort

10. April 2008

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Cape Fuchsia, Cape Figwort

Latin name: Phygelius aequalis ‘Yellow Trumpet’ Description: Phygelius are becoming ever more popular because of their long flowering period and the abundance of flowers that they bear. They grow into a fairly compact bush with twiggy branches with oval, pointed deep to pale green leaves. The inflorescences are held above the foliage and drip from […]

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