Plant of the Month - August 2019

Sambucus nigra subsp. canadensis ‘Maxima’

Sambucus nigra subsp. canadensis - K Keeton
Sambucus nigra subsp. canadensis - K Keeton
Sambucus nigra subsp. canadensis 'Maxima'
Osborn's Field
©K. Keeton
Sambucus nigra subsp. canadensis - K Keeton

This is a particularly beautiful American elder, related to our common elder of hedges and copses. This plant was one of the ‘Restoration plantings’ of 2004, and is situated on the edge of Osborns Field (area J on downloadable map). Sambucus canadendis was introduced to the UK from America in 1761. It is native of eastern N. America from Canada to Florida. The subspecies ‘Maxima’ is the most remarkable form, with large leaves and enormous cream-coloured flower clusters, that are pleasantly fragrant. The rosy purple flower stalks, which remain after the flowers have fallen, are an added attraction. The largest heads of flowers may be obtained by hard pruning in early spring!

Meconopsis_staintonii-P_Kohn
Meconopsis staintonii
Woodland Garden
©P. Kohn
Also of interest this month, and well worth a visit is the flowering of a couple of unusual meconopsis in the Woodland Garden. (area Q). There are three plants of Meconopsis wallichii. These vary in colour from white to pale blue. The tall late-flowering Meconopsis staintonii f. albiflora may also be seen. The earlier flowering form grows to around six feet, but the tallest of the late flowering plants is getting on for ten feet tall (3m). Just hope it stands up to the wind and rain!!! Meconopsis_staintonii-P_Kohn
Meconopsis wallichii
Woodland Garden
©P. Kohn

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