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31 March

Tetrapanax paprifer 'Rex'
The newly emerging leaf on a Tetrapanax 'Rex'. A large leaf form of Tetrapanax paprifer, which is hardier too. The Rex name was coined by UK plantsman Paul Spraklin as a joke due to its large size "T-Rex". Similar forms exist under the names 'Empress' and also 'Steroidal Giant'. The UK forms were introduced originally by Crug Farm ('Rex' and 'Empress' being their introductions). 'Steroidal Giant' is an American introduction now sometimes available in the UK.
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30 March



Our Koi in the existing Koi Pond.
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29 March



Peacock in the grounds of Kew Gardens. Sadly it kept its magnificent tail to itself.
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28 March



Looking up in the Palm House at Kew Gardens.
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27 March


Building the final layer of our pond. For more pictures see our Facebook Album.
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26 March



Our Jungle Hut in the summer.
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25 March



A Seagull watching us from a convenient telephone booth in Dawlish Devon.
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24 March

Phyllostachys aureosulcata 'Argus' 
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23 March

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22 March

Stachyurus chinensis 'Celina'
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21 March

Magnolia loebneri 'Leonard Messel'
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20 March

The garden this weekend
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19 March




We built our jungle hut as an extension to an existing garden outbuilding. For the full story behind he building see our blog post on Alternative Eden.
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18 March

Jungle pathway.
In the jungle area at the bottom of our garden, you have to fight past the treeferns. Its great on a dry day but you do end up rather wet if its been raining!
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17 March

Mushrooms at Kew Gardens
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16 March

Hedgehog in our Garden


This little Hedgehog (or one very much like him) is often seen wandering in our garden. Hopefully having a meal of slugs to help stop the newly emerging Hostas from being eaten!
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15 March

Bosahan Garden, Cornwall.
Bosahan is a typical Cornish Valley Garden and like Penjerrick (See our blog from last year) it is not heavily commercialised. There are no plant sales nor tea rooms and payment for entry to the gardens is via an honesty box. Bosahan really is a wonderfully escapist garden, and being off the beaten track does not have the large numbers of visitors that some of the more famous Cornish Gardens attracts, well worth the £4 entrance fee.
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14 March

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Fallopia japonica 'Milk Boy'
Fallopia japonica 'Milk Boy'
Fallopia japonica 'Milk Boy' is a small growing, variegated form of the Japanese Knotweed that only grows up to 18 inches tall. The first flush of leaves in the spring is almost pure white with a pink blush and can stay like that for a week or so before green flecks gradually appear on the previously pure white leaves. Subsequent flushes are variegated green and white with random patterns. Because of the intensity of variegation it is best sited from dappled to full shade and keep an eye on slugs and snails which seems to adore devouring this (seemingly) delicate plant.
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13 March

Phalaenopsis 'Las Palmas'
Orchid photo taken at the Kew Tropical Extravaganza. For more photos see our blog post from the event last month.
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12 March


Spring seems to have finally arrived, along with the bees!
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11 March

Times Eureka Garden


Now reassembled at Kew, The Times Eureka Garden was designed by Marcus Barnett and won a Silver Medal at the Chelsea Flower Show in 2011.This photo shows the detail of the main architectural feature in the garden, a modern take on the traditional pergola. We quite liked it but after only a few months in Kew it is starting to look scruffy. Another interesting Chelsea idea that doesn't really translate well into a real garden.
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10 March

Persicaria runcinata
This is a new plant for us and we have yet to try it outside but I’m confident it will be hardy enough for our location. I’ve been after this persicaria for quite some time now after seeing it on various websites based in continental Europe but it seems to be more widely available there than in the UK as I yet to find a source here. Fortunately we were sent several rooted cuttings by a friend from Holland and I’m looking forward to planting this out in the garden. Originating from high altitude parts of Nepal, it’s been reported that this can be invasive on milder areas but can remain clumping elsewhere. I guess I’ll just have to wait and see how it will perform in our garden!

For more Persicaria forms see the post in our Exotic Garden Blog.
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9 March

Begonia luxurians
Begonia luxurians is not quite hardy enough in our location, however this potted specimen is kept frost free with minimum temperatures of 0C or above which keeps the plant evergreen in our greenhouse.
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8 March

Giant metal bug at Kew Gardens.
Kew often exhibit scupture in the various glasshouses. We were rather taken by this large metal bug!
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7 March

Metasequoia at Kew Gardens.
Metasequoia (dawn redwood) is a fast-growing, deciduous tree, and the sole living species, Metasequoia glyptostroboides, is one of three species of conifers known as redwoods. It is native to the Sichuan-Hubei region of China. Although the least tall of the redwoods, it grows to at least 200 feet (60 meters) in height. Local villagers refer to the original tree from which most others derive as Shui-sa, or "water fir", which is part of a local shrine. Since that tree's rediscovery in 1944, the dawn redwood has become a popular ornamental.

Together with Sequoia sempervirens (coast redwood) and Sequoiadendron giganteum (giant sequoia) of California, Metasequoia is classified in the Cupressaceae subfamily Sequoioideae. Although M. glyptostroboides is the only living species in its genus, three fossil species are known as well. The other Sequoioideae and several other genera have been transferred from the former Taxodiaceae family to Cupressaceae based on DNA analysis.

Text source: Wikipedia

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6 March



Ladybirds enjoying the sunshine... Caption competition time perhaps!
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5 March

Purple Primula
Although we dont grow any primula in our garden, somehow the jewel like tones always attracts me in the garden centres. A large selection of purple plants together in a nursery in Devon once again just begged to have a photo taken!
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4 March

Our friend Gary creates the most intricate carved designs from ordinary concrete blocks.
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3 March


Koi Pond
Our exisiting Koi pond and Barbecue area, this was where our keen interest in Koi began. For photos of our current Koi Pond Project see this post showing the work to December 2011. Further updates and pictures are on our Exotic Garden Blog with the tag 'Pond Build'.
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2 March

Jungle Hut
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1 March

Tregrehan, Cornwall
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