I have been on my travels, and I’m not talking about trips down the stairs off my feet. I have been visiting my homeland; I’ve been to Cornwall. Unlike today, when the rain sheets and the wind joins the party, the weather was for the most part good. I am a simple soul and any journey that involves good food, wine, exemplary company and a few gardens is the recipe for a fine meal. It will not surprise you that many plant photos were taken, too many. Which is why, this week, I have decided to share a few with your good selves, six to be precise. When I say precise, I mean “roughly”. I have struggled to whittle my pictures down to the golden number. For that I would need six hundred on Saturday. I am saving more for next time. Before I shimmy on, I must point you in the direction of our mentor and spiritual guide, The Prop, here you can enjoy his and all the gang’s gardens. Shall we make haste?
Our B&B was sublime. We have stayed there several times before, but there is always the worry of The Returners’ Curse. We had nothing to fear. Great hosts, fabulous rooms, amazing food and a floriferous welcome. Perfect.
My hedychiums were either hidden out of view or are reluctant to flower, they are known sulkers when moved. Although many in Penlee Park had gone over, there were a few in bloom to remind me just why I love them. Whilst I was in Cornwall I saw no plant labels. Not one. You are at my mercy.
In a small park opposite Jubilee Pool there are several large stands of Fasicularia bicolor. Perhaps a little indelicately, I peer ed into rosette after rosette until I found just what I was looking for. Fantastic.
Another Penlee Park beauty, the highly poisonous but downright beautiful Cestrum parqui. Night scented, moth pollinated, worth the jeopardy.
Behold, a phytolacca fruit stalk! As I was photographing this wonderful plant, a women pulled up on her bicycle and asked if I knew what it was called. She explained that she cycled past it every day and had always wondered about it. I told her and we had a bit of a chat. I was then taking some photos of the nearby tulbaghia and the couple on the bench asked if I knew what the purple berried plant was. I told them and we had a bit of a chat. I think they need labels. Although I do enjoy a chat.
Also in Penlee Park is Colquhounia coccinea, a great favourite of mine. I left mine in North Devon, it had never flowered, although I am sure it is blooming its blooming head off now. In the small walled memorial garden it had grown to a tree. I was jaw droppingly impressed, as were the bees.
I don’t have the best eye sight, but I can spot a plant table at 100m. Wandering around the back streets of Newlyn, I spotted a suspicious blur in the distance. I did not raise my hopes, having walked past one in St Ives selling aeonium cuttings for a disgraceful £12 for a small pot. No such nonsense here. I was jubilant; a jade plant, a hottentot fig and, joy of joys, a small variegated agave. £8 for the lot and all for a children’s charity. Add to this the cuttings that our lovely landlady took of all her succulents and we had a nice little box to bring home. Happy, happy, happy.
What do you mean seven? Surely not! Let us move on swiftly and say our goodbyes. ‘Til next time.