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Late bloomers


By kowhai


Several years ago, we acquired, at a special plant sale, a cream flowered weigela. According to the Wikipedia entry, weigela ‘flowers are 2-4 cm long, with a five-lobed white, pink, or red (rarely yellow) corolla, produced in small corymbs of several together in early summer’. Our weigela is more or less as advertised, except that, firstly, the flowers are cream (with imagination, yellow), and secondly, our plant has flowered twice, first in early spring, and now, in mid summer. In fact, it is flowering more abundantly now than in its proper flowering season. However, unlike the pink flowered varieties, it doesn’t flower abundantly, which is a bit disappointing.

Like a lot of plants in my garden, the weigela is a refugee from one of the borders. If plants don’t thrive in the borders, I tend to rescue and pot them. This means that more and more plants now occupy pots, so the patio has become a kind of plant refuge. Fortunately, with one exception, to be discussed, they are all frost tolerant so don’t have to be hauled into shelter during the winter and, indeed, they all survived the worst that last winter could throw at them.

One of the plants which goes out for the summer break, along with the clivea, is ‘Meg and Hugo’s hibiscus’. Meg was a colleague and neighbour when we lived in Fiji, where hibiscus are to be found in every garden, private and public. In the climate there, a twig bunged into the soil will quickly become a shrub and, if you’re not careful, a tree! Although there is a woody hibiscus which is frost tolerant, and which produces either white or blue flowers, the tropical hibiscus, which produces abundant flowers ranging from white thru apricot to bright red, is not. Our hibiscus, which came to us as a toddler, is now a lanky teenager, and in a very sunny spot on the patio, and with the rather sultry weather we’ve been having lately, it must think it’s back in the tropics, so is now flowering abundantly. Since the flowers are orange, they provide a nice counterpoint to the orange day lilies which are also flowering in abundance.

So, as other plants have gone into a kind of mid summer recess, some, like the hibiscus and the weigela have decided that it’s time to strut their stuff, for which we are very thankful!

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Love this Hibiscus, lovely glossy leaves and large flowers, really envious..
I have Hibiscus "Blue Bird" just in bud at the moment but a bit further north than you!

22 Jul, 2010


That Hibiscus is a real beauty!

I really like the Weigela - I don't suppose you know its name or latin suffix, do you please? That would be one for my 'wish list'!

22 Jul, 2010

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