The first of the big flowers to burst into bloom in our relatively small garden is this extremely attractive Camelia. We have nurtured and taken care of this extraordinary shrub for the last fifteen years. Buds are visible all over the branches in December which suddenly burst into a sensational covering of quite large blooms. They gradually fade and drop from the branches, covering the lawn with the discarded flower heads, loose petals and tiny buds. I am often filled with wonder at the effort this shrub makes to produce such perfection.


Next to make an impressive appearance is the incredible Tree Peony. A quite unassuming shrub for most of the year, our Tree Peony quietly merges into the background of the borders. We actually have two of these wonderful shrubs in the garden. One of the two is situated in a shady corner and doesn’t flower as prolifically as the other. In late March and early April large buds begin to appear at the ends of the branches. Then, with a burst of shocking pink the buds swell and reveal huge, showy, impressive blooms. Then after about ten days these lovely blooms complete their cycle of life, wither, and fall from the shrub. Another source of wonder to the thinking man.

Written by John Yeo © All rights reserved.