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Shrub Pruning


Once again, because of my rules, this post will of course be focussing on activity at the Horniman Museum Gardens, however, a little update from home first:

The cacti and succulents are kept out of the rain, which finally we have been getting plenty of. From left to right: Opuntia phaecantha, Pachyphytum compactum f. Cristata, Gasteria huttoniae, dragonfruit, Echeveria agavoides var Cristata, Opuntia subulata, Stapelia variegata, Cephalocereus sinilis and more dragonfruit. Speaking of which, I am now officially a member of BCSS: the British Cactus and Succulent Society, with a pen and badge and regular cultivation information. So proud. :)

Sometimes it is sunny, and unknown winged beasts bask on the glass:

And there are some fabulous fungi residing in a vine tomato pot, not hindering the ripening process at all. Yes, I will be harvesting my tomatoes in November!

(not) Enough about my greenhouse.


Firstly, after a variety of berberis, a Spiraea that looks a lot like a berberis:

Leggy Symphoricarpos poking their heads out of other bushy shrubs:

Sadly we mattocked out this lovely Euonymus, which although a great specimen, was unwanted rootstock which had reverted. Though I could not take it home on the bus, I took plenty of cuttings. In the past I have not had much luck with cuttings, but the Kew student I am working with taught me a different way to that I have seen on Gardener’s World, so there is new hope. Ah, Alison, she’s here on 3 month work experience and I have been working with her most days, absorbing her knowledge. Free Kew expertise? Yes please!

Behind that you can see this arching Pyracantha, one of many, laden with berries. These were brought down from a great height into something more manageable but retain a lot of their fruit:

Griselina. That’s something new to me, and because of its intense chartreuse colour, acrylic texture and subtly undulating broad leaf texture, this shrub has a place in my heart:

The same colour as this cricket’s bottom:

The cricket was crawling into the bolt on the electric tool shed, where the leaf blowers live. It was during leaf blowing the next morning that I came across these benign bird’s next fungi (Nidulariaceae).

A fungus that is most certainly not benign is the nasty infection Coral Spot (Nectria). Here seen killing off half a ligustrum. Oh well, one less privet didn’t hurt:

I always had a fondness for Mahonias, but I like them even more now I know how fragrant their sulphurous inflorescences are:

Also in bloom are the ivy-like Fatsia japonicas:

And now I know what an Osmanthus is:

But who’s been out with the highlighter pen behind it? The most visually stunning shrubs along the whole avenue right now are these berberis. Put on your sunglasses and enjoy just how much I photographed their tangerine spires:

The final shrub I’d like to share is Euonymus alatus. There’s nothing quite like it. Its bark does this geometric thing which I really hope I’ve captured in these three shots:

And next to that more mushrooms! The recent damp spell has set off an eruption of earthy caps:

What, apart from a rocketing horticultural vocabulary, excellent company, valuable experience, fresh air and lots of photos, do I gain from all this? Free shrubs. Seedlings, suckers, cuttings a variety of specimens.

My Sarcococca (Christmas Box) is budding:

November is nice.

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Interesting photos and text.
Added to GoYpedia Pruning :o)

5 Nov, 2011


Oh, I remember the Horniman museum from a child - we used to wander up there in the school holidays for something to do, and I recall the gardens as they were then, or at least, part of them. Seem to remember steps down a sort of terrace... I shall be following your blogs with interest.

5 Nov, 2011


Thank you, Terratoonie and Bamboo.
Bamboo, I am so glad you have fond memories of the place when it was really flourishing. We are trying to make it even better. :)

5 Nov, 2011


An intersting blog and photos.

5 Nov, 2011


I'm glad you enjoyed it, clarice. :)

5 Nov, 2011


Smashing photographs and a very good blog, I enjoyed it, thankyou....

5 Nov, 2011


Thank you very much, Lincslass. :)

5 Nov, 2011


Congratulations on being a member of the British Cactus and succulent Society :o)

5 Nov, 2011


Great pictures T. Like like that Grisellina, may look into this one for next year :)
Smashing blog as usual!

6 Nov, 2011


Thanks very much, Hywel and Scottish. :D

6 Nov, 2011


What a joy it must be for you to go to work each morning! Great blog. I too love that Grisellina and that Euyonomous amazing!

6 Nov, 2011

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