When I first started working with roses and discovered I was going to need to distinguish between 30 or 40 pinks and know their names, I resorted to flash cards: the kind young children use to learn words. In no time at all I was well on the way to a lifetime of floral nitpicking. Is a the shape of a double flowered rose technically a shallow cup, recurved, a pompon or a chalice? That kind of thing.
So I often notice when people mistake a peony or a camellia for a rose, even if I’d have to concede that the colours and forms of their flowers can be essentially the same.
My last visit to Dunham Massey was in winter, when the snowdrops were at their height. This time I didn’t take a single picture of snowdrops: they had either gone to seed or were looking bedraggled. A few early camellias were in bloom, but there are far more still at the tight bud stage. Continue reading
At this time of the year, if you spot a glorious rose bush in full flower, the chances are you’re looking at a Camellia japonica. I have a particular weakness for variegated camellias, so it’s not surprising that this one caught my eye. Continue reading
If you think you see a rose in full flower out of season – look again – it’s probably a camellia. Continue reading