Magnolias – A grand display at Kew …. @kewgardens #springatkew #magnoliawatch

IMG_8901Magnolia campbellii (above and below)

A chill hour spent in Kew Gardens but mightily impressed with the Magnolias – all I went to see and I confess I was not optimistic about seeing so much in flower, a delightfully grand show. Such a glorious sugar confection of pinks and white!

I had been thinking we were at least a couple of weeks behind the curve of Spring last year but perhaps this is a little out – maybe just a week? In any event, a perfect break in my day and a perfect show of pristine blossom.

This first gallery (above) – Magnolia campbellii in full flower and what a display! Several large specimens in bloom, the largest trees in a grove containing many different species of Magnolia and visible from the Victoria Gate. Siren-like, they drew me in, across the lawns, the Species Rose Garden and formal rose gardens outside the Palm House, past the still bare cherries and onwards. No need for a map, the Campbell’s Magnolias stood right out in the grey landscape.

Below, Magnolia Charles Raffill


There are many specimens which are still showing no colour at all, so the display is going to go on for several weeks I suspect – though these first flowers, there being no rain and no stormy weather, are pristine and perfect, hardly a petal on the grass at all. Excellent timing, though I say so myself!

Below, Magnolia cyclindrica


IMG_8971Magnolia sprengeri var Diva (above and below) several specimens, some more open than others and one markedly paler.

IMG_8972IMG_8977This specimen much more advanced, with great open flowers –

This specimen (below) much much paler – perhaps the colour will develop as the flowers mature – also M. sprengeri var Diva

Magnolia Tonia (below) – not at all so far advanced but giving an idea of the size of flower and the richer colour. You might search through the Teddington Gardener archives as I’ve been exactly here before in years past.

IMG_9036Magnolia salicifolia – willow-leaved magnolia

and a quick return look at Magnolia campbelli – there are several specimens in the Magnolia Grove to admire just now…

and a return to the gorgeous Diva…


and a white variety now, Magnolia heptapeta – contrasting very well with Magnolia campbellii planted next door –


Magnolia ‘Kewensis’ (below) just throwing out the first blooms of the season –

The Magnolia Grove – with a lot more to give from many more varieties.

IMG_9142IMG_9137IMG_9133IMG_9125IMG_9120IMG_9095IMG_9078IMG_8897A real lift to my day, these Magnolias and a there being a parking space right by the Victoria Gate (you know my rule, I have to stop if there is such a good space to pull over) a real bonus that there was so much in flower. I might otherwise have headed for the Rockery and Alpine House – and perhaps taken a look at the Kitchen Garden created for ‘Kew on a Plate’ if it is still there. And the woodland area – I think the Scilla are out in force though not yet the bluebells. Maybe the Rhododendron Walk … ah well, next time, next opportune parking space!


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