The RHS Award of Garden Merit is given to plants after a period of assessment by experts and intended as a practical guide for the gardener. The HPS Conservation Scheme has several plants that hold AGM's such as Bergenia 'Pugsley's Pink' and Iris sibirica 'Peter Hewitt'.
This month I thought it might be interesting to look at how some of the conservation plants have performed so far this year. There are many conservation plants still to come in the latter half of the year and I will do another review in the autumn.
Dianthus 'Gold Dust' is said to have been raised from a batch of Allwoodii Alpinus Group seed around 1970 and named by S. Jackson in 1981 who found the plant in a garden in the East Yorkshire town of Beverley. The garden owner had bought it from a stallholder at a local fete who had grown it from seed.
Disappointingly, we have had to cancel the Annual Lecture Day and AGM planned for 5th September.
Members will automatically receive full refunds for their ticket(s).
As the office is closed, refunds for postal bookings will take a little while, so please bear with us in these difficult times.
The Hardy Plant Society continues to follow official government and NHS advice on the Coronavirus (Covid-19) situation, and with the country still under lockdown our Office at the Basepoint Centre in Evesham remains closed.
Geranium x oxonianum hybrids (a cross between G. endressii and Ger. versicolor) are common with over 60 listed in the RHS Plant Finder in 2019, so with plenty to choose from why add G. x ox. 'Diane's Treasure' to the Conservation Scheme? It was suggested as suitable for conservation last year and has not been listed in the Plant Finder since 2016.
A new HPS booklet on Border Phlox will be published later this year, and it seems appropriate that we have several more phlox that are new to the Conservation List. Phlox paniculata 'Maude Stella Dagley' was featured in January, but here are four more of these lovely border perennials being grown and assessed for the Conservation Scheme this year.
Epimedium 'Milky Way' forms a mature clump approximately 30cm x 30cm; the new spring foliage is attractively speckled with deep purple and leaves mature to green with a silver overlay on the main veins; these are semi-evergreen, often persisting through the winter. Clusters of small white flowers with yellow stamens are held on long stems in April and May.
Phlox paniculata is native to Eastern USA and Canada and plants with mauve flowers were brought to Britain around 1730, but it was not until the early 1900's that plant breeders set about improving plants for the cut flower trade although it became popular in late Victorian and Edwardian gardens and a favourite of Gertrude Jekyll.
It was decided that it is time to say goodbye to a few plants that have featured on the list for a number of years because they are shrubs, plants with a woody structure and conservation of this type of plant does not fulfil our constitutional objective to preserve the older and less well known hardy perennials.
HPS members have a wealth of experience of growing hardy perennial plants and are asked to propose plants they think are worthy of conservation, particularly some of the older cultivars that are hard to find in nurseries or garden centres.
Chrysanthemum 'Romantica' was suggested for inclusion by HPS Hampshire Group in 2018 whose members have grown it since 2012. The name spelt with a 'c' as here is the RHS accepted name although a plant listed by Plant Heritage is C. 'Romantika', with a 'k', and may well be the same plant.
Phlox paniculata 'Lady Clare' is the fourth of the plants introduced to the Conservation Scheme last year. The Hampshire Group thought it worthy of inclusion because the large pale pink flowers with a deeper soft pink eye have a wonderful fragrance.
Pulmonarias have a long history in European gardens and are easily recognised in spring by their spotted leaves and pink and blue flowers on the same plant. There are pulmonarias in most gardens, and now is when they are at their best - the perfect foil for sp..
The new HPS booklet on Hardy Garden Chrysanthemums has been written by Judy Barker. Judy holds part of the Dispersed National Collection along with Hill Close Gardens in Warwick and Dr Andrew Ward of Norwell Nurseries, and she will be visiting Hill Close on Saturday 27th October for their Chrysanthemum Day when more than 70 varieties will be in bloom (for more information go to www.hillclosegardens.com). Booklets will be available to buy on the day or through the HPS website.
The Scheme is still looking for a National Coordinator and quite a few Local Groups are not represented. Information about the Scheme and the plants we grow can be found by following the About Plants / Conservation link from the home screen. If you enjoy growing and propagating plants and would like to be involved then please get in touch (email@example.com)
The Conservation Scheme is looking for suggestions of plants that you would like to add to the list. Herbaceous perennials fall in and out of favour and you may be surprised to discover that your favourite plant is no longer readily available to buy. Which plant would you choose for Conservation?
Recent contributors to the Plant of the Month blog, Andrew Luke and Miranda Janatka are taking a break - I'm sure you will join me in thanking them for their excellent articles. If you would like share your experiences and observations then please send a short, illustrated piece to firstname.lastname@example.org
This unusual euphorbia was introduced to the Conservation Scheme in 2010 by HPS Norfolk & Suffolk Group and verified as the correct plant by Don Whitton, National Collection holder of Hardy Euphorbias. It is seldom offered for sale and was last listed in the RHS Plant Finder in 2015. ...