Lily Lion Heart

Sunday, 25 September 2011

From China with Love

Petrocosmeas hail from China and most form these tight succulent basal rosettes that conjure up images of the tightest and neatest high alpines. It is a genus of the family Gesneriaceae the African violet family. Most of the species within this genus are endemic to high-altitude areas in Western China, although some are native to other parts of Asia. It generally grows on wet mossy rocks or forests of limestone in shady areas.  There are approximately 13 species, 7 of which I grow. The plants featured in this post are Petrocosmea flaccida which comes from a shaded ledge on a sandstone cliff near Mount Emei. It was previously unknown outside of China, but is now admired in Europe and North America because of its deep purple flowers. The other two species that are currently blooming are P. formosa and P. barbata.

These plants like cool shadier conditions and so most are grown under two flouresecnt tubes or in an east facing windowsill.  The flowers are floriferous and quite long-lasting. I adore this little know genus.

Correa "Carmine Bells"

Correa is a lovely genus and shrub I have been growing for a few years. My fellow gardener and friend Barry gave me a cutting of this. It comes from Australia and is not hardy here in the Northern Hemisphere. I quite likes the heat and cool weather equally. In late summer you get a flush of these gorgeous fuschia pink bells. This plant will bloom until early spring in the cool greenhouse which is where it will spend its winter. This plant is rare grown or found in collections as it is difficult to come by. It is an evergreen plant which never goes dormant. The plant is probably a hybrid between reflexa and pulchella.

Saturday, 17 September 2011

Clematis heracleifolia

Is a beautiful herbacious perennial not a vine.It comes from China and is 3-4' tall. It blooms from July to Fall and is therefore an excellent additon to the garden for fall colour. Even more pleasant is that fact that it has a delicate scent and the flowers are a tubular purple colour.