Japanese woodland favourite

Kirengeshoma_palmata

Kirengeshoma palmata is a late-flowering rhizomatous perennial up to 1.2m high with arching stems and is native to the woods and mountain lowlands of Korea and the Japanese islands of Shikoku and Kyushu. The unusual name? No, it doesn't come from an obscure Danish botanist called Kirengeshom. It's really just a Latinised version of the original Japanese name. Palmata, a common Continue Reading

Fuchsia in New Zealand

flora-fuchia-bonsai

Fuchsia (named after Leonhard Fuchs, a 16th century German botanist) is a genus of over 100 species of shrubs and small trees. Although there are four New Zealand native species (colensoi, excorticata, perscandens and procumbens) and one from Tahiti, the vast bulk of the genus occurs in Central and South America.  Think of fuchsias and chances are the fancy garden hybrids come Continue Reading

Blueberry from Down Under!

CFG Photo

Whether we know it or not, most of us are familiar with the genus Vaccinium as it has among its members several current or potential commercial crops, such as blueberry, cranberry, bilberry and huckleberry. Vaccinium delavayi, however, is strictly ornamental and very unlikely to be our next export success. Continue Reading

Beauties of Spring

spring flowers

Spring is a time when there are so many plants bursting into growth and flower that sometimes it’s hard to see the wood for the trees, or in our case the plants for the flowers. So this month I thought it might be appropriate to consider some of the smaller and less obtrusive spring plants that are often overlooked. Continue Reading

Twenty Winter Garden Tips

(c) Geoff Bryant

When winter gets serious - no more of those little squalls that send gardeners scurrying for shelter - but days of rain and numbing cold, it can seem that hibernation really is the best way to get through winter. But once all the seed and plant catalogues and the latest books have been read, what next? You can’t huddle by that fireside forever. Well, not for much longer anyway. Continue Reading

Winter Sweet

Wintersweet (c) Rosemary

While gardeners in mild, frost-free parts of the country can look forward to an abundance of flowers in any month provided heavy rain doesn't batter the blooms too much, those of us in the colder regions have learnt to really appreciate the hardy battlers that bloom on through the frosts. And it most certainly is the frosts that make the difference. I live in Christchurch and Continue Reading