Magnolia liliiflora 'Nigra' in full leaf by mid september."The Shambles"Mid September and heavy rain and thundery showers in the last 24 hours have transformed our spring and summer prospects. Up to this point 7 or 8 weeks of very dry and unseasonably warm weather had made our ongoing plant propagation very water dependent.
New plants are always going in here but in the last couple of months were in peril, needing constant watering.
The enormous variety of long established perennials, shrubs, vines and trees were not troubled by the dry at all. However, the failure of a cold winter and the warm dry spring had made from some uncharacteristic early flowering and a less spectacular show from some usually reliable display plants.
Weigela florida, Weigela alba and our newly established Weigela 'Eva Rathke' still have last years spent leaves hanging and haven't decided when spring starts as yet. Hopefully these storms will ginger them along.
New additions which will be harden on in pots are Spiraea japonica 'Gold Flame', Garrya elliptica 'James Roof' and Buddleja lindleyana. The Weigela florida variegata which have established in pots, we will try and venture out into the ground. The rain will now help along newly planted Cleome 'Senorita Alba', Heliotrope arborense, Nictotiniana spp, Neomarica caerulea, Russelia equisitiformis (red) and our newly planted roses 'White Maman Cochet' and 'Laure Davoust'.
In our rainforest corner newly established young palms Livistona chinense and the newly planted ferns here and in the fernery can now get cracking.
Of course long established plants displaying best at the moment are Brunfelsia latifolia, Brunfelsia excimia, Spiraea cantoniensis, Eupatorium megaphyllum, Clivea miniata and of course the many arborial epiphytic orchids. Tabebuia chrysotrica is having a half hearted display this year having not lost all of its leaves in our brief winter.