Not All Plants That Glitter Are Gold

Lilium 'Roselily Samantha'

In horticultural circles, new varieties are released with a fanfare of publicity. But we all make mistakes, even plant breeders.

Lilies are often grown for cutting but their ample pollen has an unfortunate way (from a human-centric viewpoint) of staining paintwork and wedding dresses. In double lilies, the pollen-bearing parts (anthers) have mutated to extra petals, removing the problem. So in the last few years, several companies have been marketing double forms of Lilium orientalis as Roselilies, Lotus lilies or Double Orientals.

When I photographed Lilium ‘Roselily Samantha’ a couple of years ago, I noticed that some of the blooms had a curious blunt look before they were fully open, caused by incurved petals at the centre. I liked the effect, although it reminded me more of a bromeliad than a rose. The upper petals had a tendency to open over the tops of the previous layer rather than to overlap as a double rose would. Continue reading “Not All Plants That Glitter Are Gold”

Colourful Pavement Garden In Lancashire, England

Pavement garden with lots of flowers

I’ve been fascinated by the use of containers clustered together to create the illusion of a garden since my first visit to Japan where the style is widespread. This fine example of a container garden is much closer to home.

Diminutive, but for me, as sweet as they come, it brightens up the entrance to a traditional stone-faced terrace that opens directly on to the pavement. Continue reading “Colourful Pavement Garden In Lancashire, England”