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From Kazakhstan to Bracknell


By AndrewR


This is the fourth (and last) of my blogs on some of the plants I saw on my trip to Kazakhstan earlier this year.

Being a plantsman, I am always on the look-out for unusual or interesting plants or others that just capture my attention. These go on a ‘wants’ list which somehow never seems to get any shorter! These are the ones I added from my trip to Kazakhstan earlier this year.

The first one I saw was eremurus cristatus – perhaps it was the brown flowers that captured my attention

If I had to choose just one plant from the holiday to grow, it would be leontice eversmanii. There were thousands of these growing on open grassland – from a distance, it looked like a field of yellow footballs. I don’t think this plant is in cultivation so perhaps it is not easy to grow

I had never given more than a second glance before to allium karataviense, but seeing it growing wild in stony places inspired me to plant it in coarse gravel where it looks very much at home

Rosa persica is an important plant in rose history as it was the first yellow one to be discovered and used in rose breeding. Unfortunately our British summers are generally not warm enough to encourage it to flower and it is currently not on sale in this country

Another eremurus, E. lactiflora, was growing in snow so it must be hardy enough for Britain

Everyone on the trip got excited over fritillaria sewerzowii. The flowers were very variable in both size and colour – we saw brown, orange and yellow blooms on different plants. I have managed to track this one down (from Living Colour, a bulb firm near Penzance who sell plants by mail order) and ordered three plants. It really needs dry summers so may be tricky to grow but I will try giving it a sheltered spot and see if I can please it

Gymnospermium alberti is a small plant from the berberis family (see how similar the flower are). This one usually had its roots tucked under a rock or in shade which gives a clue as to what it needs

We saw primula kaufmanniana on the last day, growing in light woodland. But it is not for sale in Britain so perhaps it will not grow outside for us

Thank goodness for Plant Finder and the internet!

More blog posts by AndrewR

Previous post: Odds and Ends from Kazakhstan

Next post: First 2012 Olympic venue opened



Interesting blog.
Pretty Primula above.
A pity if we can't grow it in GB. :o)

13 Nov, 2008


You saved the best until last, Andrew. What beautiful plants and flowers. It makes you want to track all of them down, doesn't it. Well - all that can be grown in the UK, anyway!

Thank you so much for sharing your photos with us.

13 Nov, 2008


I agree with Spritz you saved the best till last, really enjoyed your blog.

13 Nov, 2008


Pitty we can't get them all here, eg the primula. They might be able to grow in a greenhouse.
I've enjoyed all these blogs.
Where's your next holiday going to be ?

13 Nov, 2008


Are you asking so that we could join him, Hywel?

13 Nov, 2008


Of course I am.
The more the merrier ! lol

13 Nov, 2008


Still deciding Hywel, but it may not be a plant holiday this time

13 Nov, 2008


: (

13 Nov, 2008


You're not getting out of it THAT easily, Andrew!

How about the Andes next time?

13 Nov, 2008


Yes !. Now that would be interesting.

13 Nov, 2008


How lovely to see some different plants, they are all beautiful. You were fortunate to see them in their own homes.

13 Nov, 2008


I was thinking more on the lines of China spritz. Or back to South Africa - haven't been to Namaqualand yet

13 Nov, 2008


A lovely Blog Andrew, and a stunning collection of photos of such interesting plants.

If you do decide on China for your next holiday, I'm sure you will find the culture and gardens fascinating. I would love to return sometime as the holiday earlier this year was a taster. The gardens are breathtaking.

Many thanks for sharing this Blog.

14 Nov, 2008


Very interesting - thanks Andrew :-)

14 Nov, 2008


I just spotted Botanic Trips in the back of the current RHS magazine, Andrew! Lots of interesting places to go.

I'd love it, husband wouldn't. End of.

15 Nov, 2008


Nice to see something different, I like the Leontice eversmanii

19 Nov, 2008


Yes, many thanks for posting these blogs, Andrew. I have enjoyed them very much and look forward to seeing the fruits of your future holidays.

23 Nov, 2008

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