All is Revealed!

I promised not to keep you waiting for the name of the two plants that have been wowing me this winter.

I am surprised none of you guessed as I’ve mentioned the plants over the last couple of months.  Maybe you thought I was implying a shrub, well sadly there isn’t a shrub that flowers all winter here, I really wish there was.  Yes Rosa mutabilis flowers into December and this year actually managed blooms in January but it doesn’t flower in the bleak months of January and February, the months when I want some colour to cheer me.

So first is Iris unguicularis, I wrote about it as a plant of the moment on November 26th, not expecting that it would flower almost continuously until now March 7th.  There was only a two week period when there were no flowers; my clump is quite new (three years old) and already it has sent out a new clump about 30cm from the original plant.  This is the first year that it has flowered so much, I knew it would take a while to establish but it has certainly been worth waiting for, a delicate colour but not a delicate plant it has stood through strong winds and 6 weeks of sub-zero night-time temperatures, but it began flowering before any cold weather had arrived so it isn’t dependant on the cold to start it flowering.

Iris unguicularis

Iris unguicularis

I am sure the Iris will continue to spread and flower even more profusely in years to come, I intend leaving the main plant where it is (I couldn’t bear to not have the flowers next year, but I will move the off-shoot and hope to have a few clumps in strategic places in the future.

I hope with my second revelation that I’m not jumping the gun.  I planted Anemone Sylphide for the first time last autumn (at £2.00 for 25 corms from Peter Nyssen not an expensive experiment).

I didn’t soak them before planting although I did soak a different variety that I planted a bit later under the Mulberry; it did rain very heavily soon after planting them so I think I was probably lucky.  The growth appeared after about a month and I was surprised and a little worried that it should appear so early.  I showed the first bud about to open in January’s GBBD and that first flower lasted more than a month!  I call that pretty amazing.  Other buds appeared and the group still has lots of new buds waiting to open, I’ll report when the last bloom fades.  For something that gives such impact through these dull months I think it must be hard to beat.  At the price I paid I would even be willing to consider them an annual.  I will plant more next autumn and I’m looking forward to knowing whether they will return for a second and hopefully more years.

The bud appears with an elegant bent neck

The bud appears with an elegant bent neck

then shyly puts its head up to show the colour of its bud

then shyly puts its head up to show the colour of its bud

The colour becomes stronger

The colour becomes stronger

and shines in the light

and shines in the light

Slowly it opens to reveal the black centre

Slowly it opens to reveal the black centre

In the sun it opens fully

In the sun it opens fully

I want swathes of this colour to brighten winter days

I want swathes of this colour to brighten winter days

Advertisements

30 thoughts on “All is Revealed!

  1. Christina, those are both beautiful, beautiful plants. I am completely jealous of the iris… and the progress of the anemone is just gorgeous!

    • The other variety that isn’t planted in the sun doesn’t have flowers so I need to see what happens next year to be sure that this IS a winter plant. Christina

  2. I should have guessed that iris – it’s on my wish list thanks to your mentioning it before. But, I don’t know this anemone. It will now be added to my list. What a bright pink to warm the winter days!

    • Your ideas especially the Camelia would work here in Italy just not in my garden where the soil is too free draining for them to hold their buds at the end of summer. Christina

  3. Both lovely plants, and a great sequence of anenome pictures indeed. Such a bright burst of colour, and so graceful from its unfurling neck to its sweeping skirts.

      • When I was little, I remember picking flouncy poppies from the roadside in a dusty Mediterranean spring/summer and inverting them to turn them into dancing ladies with their pepperpot bodices! I think I’ll always think of petals as skirts-in-waiting :).

    • I would have winter flowering shrubs if there were any that flowered here, but until I find any I will have to survive with colour from perennials and corms. Christina

    • sorry for the delay, this got into the spam box for some unknown reason. The foliage of the Anemones is very pretty in itself, in the last image you can see the foliage of a Cerinthe and the long strap-like leaves of Dutch iris. Christina

  4. Beautiful photos and flowers. These plants would be welcome any time of the year but great to have them in winter.

    I ordered 3 kinds of Anemone for spring planting that should arrive soon. Seeing yours makes me hope they hurry–I’ve never grown them before.

  5. You sold me on both of these plants! I am writing down the names and will do some research to see if they will do well here. I recently planted some anemones, purchased on the bargain table at a local nursery.They were advertised as a woodland plant, but there was other information regarding their exact name. I look forward to seeing what they look like! I hope they are as pretty as yours.

  6. Iris unguicularis is one of my favourites, too, but I’m not familiar with the anemone. Anything that flowers in mid winter is welcome and has far more impact than it would among all the other growth and flowers of spring.

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s