The Porcelain Berry Vine, no less…

Ampelopsis brevipedunculata var. maximowiczii 'Elegans' A compact climber with attractive variegated leaves and gem-like berries - and a tongue-twisting name to boot! The leaves of this outstanding, if little known, little climber are outstanding in themselves - emerging pale copper with reddish rim, vaulting off pink leaf stalks, later turning fresh green. As they mature…

Grasses take centre stage…

A little more to look forward too, as border grasses take on their golden garb and become the main attraction. These pictures are from the RHS Gardens at Wisley, featuring the double Piet Oudolf Borders running between the orchards and the lake. A few more weeks and the show will be at its zenith -…

Like a Maple, but not a Maple….

Liquidambar styraciflua My feet take me, every autumn, to a small stand of liquidambars in the arboretum at RHS Wisley, trees which vie with the Japanese Maple for the bonfire colours they take on as the weather cools and the sun heads south. The yellow leaves are a fastigiate (slender, columnar, narrow) cultivar called Kirsten…

Tetradium glabrifolium var glaucum. So there!

A tree...this really is a beautiful specimen - at RHS Wisley, in the area behind the Bowes Lyon Rose Garden, that, earlier in the season, would be carpeted with spring flowering crocus. Gorgeous elongated leaves, with a twist, and in a Joseph's Coat of autumn colour.  With colchicums at the base, the Autumn crocus. Symmetry.…

Mr Toad

Tricyrtis macropoda (of the lily family) The Toad Lilies, so-called because of their spotted flowers, are sound perennials, preferring a soil that does not dry out, and containing a good stint of humus. They do well in the north, but the cooler the district the more sun should be available to them, to hasten their…

Happy Hydrangeas

These galleries are almost all hydrangeas with big, cone-shaped flower-heads, (paniculata), rather than rounded mop-heads (though I have included Nymphe in the galleries) - and one oak-leaved hydrangea (with distinctive leaf shape and excellent autumn colour). They have all been photographed on the slopes of Battleston Hill in the gardens of RHS Wisley, where they…

Sunglasses advised

Novelty Rose of Year 2010 Super Trouper If you are looking to ramp up the voltage in your garden this year, Super Trouper might just be the thing. A neon orange rose, exceptionally free-flowering and with a light scent and healthy foliage. Named Novelty Rose of the Year by the 'trade' in 2010 - though despite this…

Brief Encounter

The wisteria blossom is almost over, a brief but intense affair, but before it goes altogether, a look at one last display at the RHS gardens at Wisley, taken a week or so ago. On a sturdy pillar, twin pillars in fact, a glamorous, deeply fragrant display that you can get right up close to…