Mt Edgcumbe roundup

It was a terrible day for taking photographs, when it wasn’t actually raining it was desperately dull. It was however, mild, and that had brought a number of plants into flower since last week.

Peter Betteley left his camellia collection to the park and amongst it are two bushes, planted side by side and both labelled ‘Peter Betteley’. The name has been registered and in the register the parentage is given as ‘Bokuhan’ x ‘Scented Sun’, with credit for the cross going to Lee Stenning, curator of the collection. He tells me that is not in fact so, that they came from Mr Betteley along with the rest of his collection.


Camellia ‘Peter Betteley’ 1P-039


The bush in the picture above had a bloom open on 29/11/16 and now has many open and some dropped to the ground. The other bush has just opened its first blooms so is running about two weeks behind. Back in October I compared the foliage and took pictures. I am tentatively of the opinion that they are different, probably sister seedlings. I shall be keeping a close watch on them both. Whatever the situation, both appear to have a very long flowering season with blooms that stand up well in bad weather but fall rather than withering on the bush.


‘Peter Betteley’, 1P-039 on left, 1P-040 on right.


Peter Betteley, 1P-039 on left, 1P-040 on right.

To my eye, the foliage of 1P-039 is smoother, narrower and has a somewhat downrolled edge. The differences are consistent over the whole bush.

Another small group of plants that test my abilities to tell them apart are the sasanqua x reticulata hybrids. There are three in the collection, Dream Girl, Flower Girl and Show Girl. I checked on Flower Girl, she needs another week. Show Girl is up and running though and will bloom for months. These blooms are 11cm across.


Camellia ‘Show Girl’

Elsewhere, the sasanquas are in the main going over, one notable exception being ‘Bonanza’, which is really outstanding for floriferousness and intensity of colour.


Camellia hiemalis ‘Bonanza’

Each week sees one or two more early japonicas showing their hand. Some have just an odd bloom, others are putting on more of a display, weather permitting.


                 Top row: Daikagura, Nobilissima, Mabel Blackwell, Gloire de Nantes                  Bottom row: Alexander Black, Elizabeth Rose Open, Campsii Alba, Benidaikagura

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