Tag Archives: garden

Indian Summers and Chile Autumns

October is off to a mild start this year and this gives some of our rarer plants at Nymans a chance to shine.

Indian Summer.

In our Indian summer border we have a rare shrub called Rostrinincula dependens whose delicate mauve flowers have just started to open upon pendulous racemes.

rostrinincula 4

If the weather stays fine the flowers should open fully serving as a nectar bar for insects and providing contrasting flower form and colour in the border.Here it is mingling with pink Sedum ‘Herbstfreude’, Aster ‘Purple Cloud’ and the variegated grass foliage of Miscanthus ‘Morning Light’.

Rostrinincula 2

Chile Autumns.

As the summer eats into autumn, rarities from our Chilean plant collection have a final flourish.Greigia sphacelata is a rare pineapple relative from the Chilean Andes with architectural foliage.


Our specimen was planted 3 years ago and flowered for the first time this year in September. The flowers are rather lost at the base of the foliage but I’m hoping that the flowers will ripen into fruit (known as chupones in Chile) as they are said to be sweet and delicious. Fingers crossed!


Another Chilean rarity is Myrseugenia leptospermoides which is a small, evergreen, shrub in the Myrtle family that is endangered in it’s native habitat. This year it flowered prolifically.


The close-up below shows it flowering and fruiting simultaneously. This plant has provided us with quite a few seedlings that I hope to transplant to other locations in the garden.


Also from Chile hails a plant called Bomarea caldassii. This twining perennial climber is related to Alstroemeria. It’s stems will snake their way through the lower branches of trees and shrubs and then terminate in a multi-flowered head of bright scarlet tubular flowers. Exotic and hardy.

bomarea 3

Our job as gardeners is to try and locate the many and diverse plants we grow in their best locations for them to perform but it does help if the weather can give us a helping hand, extending the growing season for as long as possible.

Author: Jon Keen, Gardener.


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Filed under Herbaceous Borders, Plant collections, Plants and Planting

Seven Wonders of Winter

Seven Wonders of Winter

You would be mistaken to think that winter holds little interest in the garden. As described in our previous blog there is much to grab your attention. Here are seven specific plants that are wonderful in the winter and can be seen at Nymans this February.


Winter wonder 1

Parrotia perscia

Parrotia perscia

Parrotia perscia is an elegant tree with steely grey branches that bare blood red flowers on bare stems in the depth of winter. You do however have to search these flowers out as they are not immediately obvious. They say good things come in small packages, and yes these little flowers are truly delightful.


Winter wonder 2

Cyclamen coum

Cyclamen coum

Cyclamen coum is a true stalwart of the winter garden. They have reflexed petals ranging from deep carmine to pure white, all with a dark purple blotch at their base. The leaves vary in shape and mottling to create a marble effect of pewters, silvers and gem like greens. They are a vision on a frosty morning peeping through a crispy frost to warm your spirits.


Winter wonder 3

Camellia ‘Maud Messel’

Camellia ‘Maud Messel’

Camellia ‘Maud Messel’ is currently in full flower with its pink semi double flowers that have a centre of golden yellow stamens; this is set off by rich deep green foliage. It is a wonderful surprise as you exit the forecourt garden that Maud herself originally designed back in the 1920s.


Winter wonder 4

Hamamelis x intermedia ‘Pallida’

Hamamelis x intermedia ‘Pallida’

Hamamelis x intermedia ‘Pallida’, it is not surprising that ‘Pallida’ is the most popular Witch Hazel with its profusion of wonderfully scented spidery sulphur yellow flowers borne on bare stems. Its flowers have an iridescent glow on a bleak winter’s day that is a sight to behold.


Winter wonder 5

Libertia peregrinans

Libertia peregrinans

Libertia peregrinans has fans of sword like leaves with a prominent orange midrib that set the borders a light. They originate from down under and bring a taste of the Antipodean to Nymans. Outside of winter they have saucer shaped white flowers and orange seed capsules.


Winter wonder 6

Miscanthus sinensis ‘Morning Light’

Miscanthus sinensis ‘Morning Light’

Miscanthus sinensis ‘Morning Light’ has upright stems and graceful arching foliage; it is a grass that adds grace and stature to the winter garden. The cream and green foliage, together with pinkish inflorescences of summer, dry to golden hues in the winter sun.


Winter wonder 7

Tilia x europa

Tilia x europa

Tilia x europa, these stately Lime trees are situated on our east drive as you approach the burnt out ruins of the house. In the low sun they create great atmosphere with their long shadows and deeply fluted trunks. Nymans is all about drama and atmosphere and these grand old trees encapsulate that vision perfectly on a distinctly chilly February morning.


Why not visit us at Nymans to see these seven wonders? If you are having trouble finding any like the small blood red flowers of the Parrotia percsia just ask a gardener and we will pleased to point you in the right direction.


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Filed under Plants and Planting, Winter interest