Plants and prospects for my new Kew Project


We’re off  to a good start – breaking ground today on my Mediterranean project in Kew. The first crop of plants have been delivered, including those I bought from North Hill Nurseries last week. The (growing) list includes –

  • Caryopteris Heavenly Blue, Dark Knight, White Surprise (7), Euphorbia White Swan (3), Pinus Mugo Mops, Amelanchier Autumn Brilliance, Hebe Green Globe, Hebe Red Edge, Dryopterix affinis, Prunus subhirtella Autumnalis Rosea, Cuppressus sempervirens Totem (2), Rhododendron Yakushimanum Grumpy, Rambler Rose The Albrighton Rambler (2), Clematis Propertius (2), Sedum reflexum (5), Hebe buxifolia nana (more needed!), Daphne odora aureomarginata, Nepeta Six Hills Giant, Hellebore Penny’s Pink (4), Hosta Francis Williams (and others), Hosta Guacamole (2), Helianthus Lemon Queen, Rose Helen Knight, Ceanothus Blue Sapphire, Brachyglottis Walberton’s Silver Dormouse (2), Digitalis Serendipity, Cryptomeria japonica Spiralis, Hebe ochracea James Stirling, Hebe Caledonia, Daphne x transatlantica Eternal Fragrance, Anemone Honorine Jobert (2), Anemone Wild Swan (3), Salvia Rhapsody in Blue (3), Trachelospermum jasminoides (6′ poles, x 2), Rose Little White Pet, Rose Tranquility, Verbena bonariensis Lollipop (5), Salvia Blue Dragon (3), Pittosporum tenuifolium Golf Ball, Skimmia confusa Kew Green, Geraneum Rozanne (3), Sarcococca confusa (1), Euphorbia myrsinites (2), Pachysandra terminalis (2), Prostranthera cuneata, Agapanthus of various hues, Aster Marjorie (2), Pulsatilla Red Clock, Hellebore Penny’s Pink (4), More box balls – 40cm and 50cm

There should be a preponderance of evergreen (ever-silver, ever-gold, ever-variegated) plants, neat topiary shapes (cushions, domes, pillows, beanbags…) with flowering shrubs and herbaceous planting to soften the formality (pale blues, deep blues,  lemons, creams and white, lilac and soft rose), though I am told the existing lupins, which I believed to be white and cream are in fact, a range of jelly bean colours….

Lavender there is already though in a shadier spot which can be moved sunwards. There are already olives trees – including a venerably Old Example with gnarled trunk, and a maturing fig, a small army of box balls and pyramids, both large and small and an urn overflowing with the fleabane, Erigeron karvinskianus. There will be more of that..

The top of a wall, at at about 1.3m in height is an ideal ledge for pot herbs, succulent and alpine displays and for sun-lovers such as dianthus and summer perlargoniums. That said there are lemons and calamondins which have been outside the whole winter without any apparent discomfort which is a factor of the sheltered spot this garden enjoys as well as the mild winter overall.

Work started today, weeding through half of the plot, clearing out old containers and rationalising the plants we want to keep – and setting out the new plants in their planting positions, ready for tweaking tomorrow. I may have a plan, but there is always room for a little movement when you see the plants on the ground.

Another plant hunting foray is necessary – and probably another after that – to ensure the garden has a mature feel, while appreciating many of the plants are going to grow considerably… Plants and planters, obelisks and some furniture too, also on my shopping list.

My first trip to North Hill Nurseries in Chobham –


More weeding tomorrow then more planting and a trip to dispose of a dozen or more bags of pruned vegetation, old pots, spent soil and unwanted (existing pot) plants.

Progress is being made…

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