Dependably Late

When American plant hunter Dan Hinkley was searching near Wolong in Sichuan Province, China, he came across what he thought was a new species of buddleia. Not unlike. B. lindleyana, it carried grey-green leaves on stems up to ten feet tall. Only later was it identified as rostrinucula dependens, a member of the mint family. […]

Read more "Dependably Late"

Weigela middendorffiana

Weigelas. Shrubs with red or pink flowers (or occasionally white). Growing to about five feet and flowering in June. Right? Well yes, but not this one. Yes, it’s a shrub. Yes, five feet or so is the usual height. but it flowers at the end of April and into May. And the flowers are yellow, pale […]

Read more "Weigela middendorffiana"

Magpie

“One for sorrow, two for joy …” begins a rhyme about magpies. But the solitary magpie in my garden has been giving me joy for over ten yeas now – stachyurus ‘Magpie.’ Stachyurus are shrubs of woodland, flowering in early spring before the leaves emerge. The pale yellow blooms look like a cross between a […]

Read more "Magpie"

Old Faithful

Some plants open their flowers in response to the weather; others depend on day length. And while many witch hazels seem to bloom in the first mild spell of winter, mine always waits until the second week of January, regardless of the weather. I planted Hamamelis mollis ‘Pallida’ nearly thirty years ago ( it has now migrated to H. […]

Read more "Old Faithful"