Daily Flower Candy: Kniphofia rooperi

Before the Second World War kniphofias, better known as red hot pokers, were one of Britain’s most popular garden plants. They sustained gardeners’ Victorian fascination with the exotic, whilst enduring our less than alluring weather. The Dig for Victory campaign saw flower gardens ploughed up from Land’s End to John o’ Groats, making way for […]

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Daily Flower Candy: Schizostylis coccinea

Relishing our mild wet winter (so far – I have probably spoken too soon!) is the South African flower Schizostylis coccinea or Hesperantha coccinea. Both names sound more like a form of food poisoning than a pretty perennial, so let’s call it by its common name, the Kaffir Lily. I spotted this spike of pink flowers […]

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Daily Flower Candy: Melinis repens

Chinese factories are not renowned for their landscaping – a few scrubby trees and sickly pot plants are likely to be the most natural greenery on offer. But once in a while one finds something interesting. At the end of the day, outside an ugly building in the middle of southern China, I spotted this […]

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Daily Flower Candy: Agapanthus africanus

Those of you who check in to The Frustrated Gardener regularly will know I’m a big fan of Agapanthus. Our majestic Agapanthus africanus come into bloom in late July. The seed heads that follow look magnificent well into autumn. Avoid the temptation to keep them intact through the winter, as they will seed prolifically and […]

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Daily Flower Candy: Disa uniflora ‘Red River’

Like the red playing card soldiers from Alice in Wonderland, the scarlet flowers of Disa uniflora ‘Red River’ marched across Dave Parkinson’s incredible exhibit at Hampton Court last week. They were joined by an army of other disas in dayglo shades of pink, yellow and orange, fighting with one another for floral supremacy. These fascinating […]

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Daily Flower Candy: Berkheya purpurea

It’s been a hot and thirsty few days in the garden. A plant which takes these conditions in its stride is Berkheya purpurea, a member of the Aster family from South Africa. With its jagged, thistle-like leaves and abundant lilac flowers it’s a superb plant for a dry, sunny spot. Berkheya can easily be grown […]

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Classy Clivia

A few years back my partner’s mother gave us an offset of one of the many clivias that bask in her front porch.  The lucky escapee has since languished in our bathroom, on an east facing window ledge, where it appears to be very happy.  For most of the year the glossy but fairly unexciting […]

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