Friday, 15 November 2013

Garden Bloggers' Bloom Day - November 2013


Probably just like me, looking better in October than November, but still showing some colour on a November day is leycesteria formosa aka the Himalayan honeysuckle. It is a deciduous shrub, which has attractive stems and pendulous flowers with bracts, which eventually give way to deep purple berries. It is particularly recommended for partial shade or woodland gardens and seems to be one of those unsung easygoing shrubs that apart from pruning just gets on and does it own thing. My shrub is a good few years old and I can no longer remember how I came by it. It does have a tendency to self seed but it can be also propagated either by softwood cuttings. If you try sowing seed from your own shrub be prepared for really sticky fingers as you open up the ripened berries and try to extract the seed. It's great fun. Just to give more of a picture of leycesteria formosa here are a couple of photos I took last month ~



Meantime great excitement here as the first of my special snowdrops is showing white - not sure which one it is as the label has gone walkabout. Hopefully I will be able to share it come December.

Thanks as always to Carol over at May Dreams Gardens for giving us the opportunity to share our November blooms.

28 comments:

  1. I don't think I've seen this plant before - it is beautiful!
    Happy Garden Bloggers' Bloom Day!
    Lea

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  2. I was recommended this plant by my local nursery but never got round to buying it. They are lovely aren't they. Maybe I need a rethink! Happy Bloom Day!

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    1. Oh what an excellent suggestion from your local nursery. It's certainly worth considering Angie if you have room - maybe a rethink would be in order :)

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    1. Hi Sharon - it is more of a woodland/ partial shade plant so I don't think it would cope with extremes of heat.

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    1. It does indeed have a touch of the exotics about it :)

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  5. What interesting and lovely blooms! I'm not familiar with this plant; I wonder if it's even hardy in my area. I learned this summer that we do have something called Bush honeysuckle, which must be related, but is invasive in our area. I found it in my garden and had it identified by a local garden expert, who advised me to pull it out immediately. I did, but if it had pretty blooms like this, I probably would have let it live:)

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    1. Thanks for your comment Rose. Apparently it is hardy to zone 7. It has been identified as invasive in New Zealand but not in the USA as far as I'm aware. Glad that you got rid of the Bush honeysuckle before it became a problem.

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  6. Lovely. We have to be thankful for any plant which gives us some colour this late in the year. How exciting, snowdrop time again already, it doesn't seem two minutes since they were last blooming.

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    1. Any late colour is much appreciated Jo especially under grey skies. Yes the snowdrops will be out before we know it - hard to believe :)

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  7. Trying again (it disappeared):
    That Himalayan honeysuckle looks stunning, Anna - how big does it grow? I am sure I could squeeze one into my woodland edge border. I know you mentioned snowdrop shoots in an email, but a show of white?! How exciting! If it wasn't dark I would have gone straight outside and checked my 'Maidwell L' which sometimes flowers in December.... ;)

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    1. Oh Cathy - I'm so sorry that you have had more problems commenting. Leycesteria formosa can grow to about eight feet by eight feet but could be curtailed :) Would be happy to send you some seed. I wonder if your 'Maidwell L' is peeking through.

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  8. That's a lovely shrub. I got some seeds given to me from the golden leaved version. They germinated and I've planted it out in the woodland, no flowers yet. I think I prefer your version. The golden leaves look a bit insipid to me.

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    1. Thanks Jessica. I did not realise that there was a golden leaved edition too :) Maybe the foliage might become more intense as the plant matures. The shrub I have has grey green stems and leaves which I like. You are welcome to seed.

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  9. This is new to me Anna. It has very attractive blooms and foliage too - so green in October still! I shall have to look this up. Thanks for profiling it!

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  10. Yes it was shining out in October Cathy. Still hanging on in there in November although more subdued. Thanks for your comment.

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  11. I keep having difficulties answering, very annoying. I've this plant in my Swiss garden where it's not too happy but it's splendid for its late flowering and, Anna, watch out for its autumn colour when its leaves turn fiery red!

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    1. Sorry that you've had difficulties commenting again Annette - I don't know what's going on. I've never noticed any significant autumn colour but then it's hidden away a bit. Will be keeping my eyes peeled now :)

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  12. Another lovely plant Anna, does it have a bit of a sprawling habit? Though I fear I will struggle to fit one in to a suitable space given all the other plants I seem intent on having. Somewhere. Maybe I will beg for some seed in a year or two!

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    1. Hi Janet - it's got quite a fair sized spread. I understand your dilemma. You are always welcome to seed :)

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  13. I have lots of seedling Leycestaria popping up over the garden, the blackbirds eat the berries and then do what they always do and spread the seed! It grows about 7ft tall and arches to about the same in width.

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    1. Sadly I rarely have seedlings Pauline despite its reputation for self seeding but I know that the birds enjoy the berries :)

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  14. Hi Anna. I have one growing in a more exposed site and it seems to do OK. I reckon we're in the minority, I don't know anyone else who grows one.

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  15. Not many of us Rob which is a shame - we need to spread the word!

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  16. My Mum gave us a few cuttings of the Leycesteria and they have quickly beefed up at the back of the border; they have such a long flowering season, and always seem to have insects taking advantage of this. I think they are rather unsung shrubs too.

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  17. This plant was on our ident walk this week - still a stunner but looking slightly dishevelled by the colder weather. I was so taken with this plant when I first saw it that I always wanted to know the name of it - and have only recently found out. I'd definitely use it in a garden, the flower bracts and berries are well worth waiting for!

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All your comments are much appreciated and treasured. I wil try to reply to everyone who leaves a comment, but it may take me a few days, especially when I start spending more time in the garden and at the lottie. I know that you will understand :) I am sure that I will also visit your blog if I have not already done so. If you have any specific questions I will either reply to them here or you can email me at : thegreentapestry@gmail.com

Namasté

- Anna.