Sicily's Mimosa Trees, 31st March 2016

I have not the slightest idea what particular variety of Mimosa populates the motorways and countryside from Messina to Taormina but they were a stunning golden adornment and in mad profusion. I commence with a baby outside a shop in the Taormina, then one draping an ugly underground car park, finally ending with the motorway distractions.


Narcissus Varieties in Flower Today

I made a conscious effort to research and trial different varieties of narcissus this Spring. I have had varieties in flower from November to the present time. So here are a few photographed this morning. First up is "Toto", a bright flower in the Cyclamineus class I believe owing to its parentage with "Jenny" to which it owes its slightly reflexed petals.


If "Toto" is small and delicate, even more so is "Hawera", an exquisite jewel of a flower. Were it to be some exotic orchid, which it is not too fanciful to suggest it resembles. it would cost many times more than it does. Anyway, if "Toto" is beginning to brown up in places, "Hawera" is fresh and unblemished. I have it in pots and in the rockery.

"Segovia" is another peach of a narcissus if I might be allowed to mix my plant epithets. The best scented of those mentioned so far, its fresh yellow eyes beam out from lovely rounded petals. All those varieties featured have flowered with ease.

"Golden Bells" is a fierce, bright yellow, each bulb producing a mass of hoop petticoat flowers. It is absolutely at its height now, beaming back into our dining room from just outside the patio doors. Fantastic and showy for all its diminutive stature

"Tresamble" is just going over as can be seen in the image below, but it is another great bulb with its multi-headed ivory flowers.

Finally let me offer an old favourite, no less than "February Gold", an odd pot of which I placed in a cooler part of the garden to hold back for now. The "trick" has worked a treat.


Jacaranda Trees, Cadiz, 23rd March 2016

I believe the Jacaranda tree is a native of Brazil and although it can take a dose of frost I reckon it is a forlorn hope to expect a Yorkshire variety. I'm only featuring it as it makes a great backdrop for the image of me, typically first off the cruise ship in early morning Cadiz. Anyway, the trees are in the small park by the port entrance.

Doddington Hall Cherry Blossom Festival, Prunus x yedoensis

We visited Doddington Hall this weekend to see their newly inaugurated Cherry Blossom Festival. The oldest cherry, Prunus x yedoensis  (the Yoshino Cherry) dated back to 1946, a tree commonly planted elsewhere but wonderful here. It had survived the snow the day before. The blossom on the tree trunk was jaw dropping.

There is a "Cherry Blossom Walk" but the snow had done for that, holding back the smaller, younger trees.

We were shown around the garden by Head Gardener, David Logan. He knows his plants!

This gives me a chance to upload a photograph I took at Hodsock in February. The shiny bark shows it is some sort of Prunus. Mind you, what I know about cherry trees can be written in thick crayon.

Viburnum x Juddii for Scent

The scent of Viburnum x Juddii is flooding the garden at the moment. It is in a semi-shaded part of the garden in my largest pot. I have several others. This is the best! Having returned from my travels, I realise that England is lovely in Spring and in my garden too - now the lawn is cut, edged and the spent flower heads from the daffodils snipped off.


And remembering .....

Galanthus 'Mighty Atom'