7 Aug 2014

Thursday Garden Review: Anemonopsis macrophylla - the Fairest of them All!

 Memes aren't really my thing, BUT, when one of your very first blog readers, and wonderful correspondent/garden friends sends out an invitation for fellow bloggers to help her in getting a meme off the ground, what can one do but participate!

Saying such, I am not sure as to whether Joy has chosen a tagline [title] for her meme, but in the meantime I shall adopt one of my own. [Do let me know dearheart!] Seems this memes theme [say that three times really fast will you!] centres around 'reviewing' and can include everything from the good, bad to the downright ugly if you are so inspired. So, enough with the small talk, lets get down to business!

 I am often asked what my favourite plant in the garden is. This is not to be confused with my 'signature' plant which for those of you that know me well enough is Corydalis flexuosa 'Blue Panda!' If absolute truth be told, my favourite plant here at Teza's Garden is without a doubt Anemonopsis macrophylla. The photos above and below for that matter do not do it the justice it deserves. The plant has a beguiling precociousness about it and never fails to stop visitors in their tracks, even before its nodding, swollen buds which dangle on wiry threads along the length of somewhat lax ebony infused stems open! [See photos below]

He [yes, mine has a gender attached to it, as do most of the residents of my garden, but they are my 'children!'] is hardy between zones 5-9, but only insomuch as the summers remain moderately cool to warm at most. It must also be noted that this genus does not politely ask for a cool, sheltered location - it DEMANDS it!  His delicate foliage and flowers will scorch and scald if exposed to full sun! Another one of my true 'shady characters!' 

Here in Fergus, Ontario [Z5B] his blooms open mid to late August, whereas plantsman Daniel Hinkley's plants in Heronswood reportedly opened late June into mid July. Irregardless, the flowers are enough to bring one to their knees in supplication! Its nodding, waxen flowers , each one consisting of lilac sepals over rows of smaller violet petals [in the words of garden mentor Larry Davidson of Lost Horizons Nursery] seem to float on the air as if my magic. Its ebony stems ascend 0.6m or slightly higher over a ferny clump of pinnate foliage.

Representing a monotypic genus, this single species is endemic to the cool, mountainous woods of Honshu, Japan where sadly, it is extremely rare. As such, he can be frustratingly difficult to seek out in hort commerce, but if you look hard enough, and are willing to part with more than the going rate for a one gallon perennial [but then, who among us self professed plantaholic/hoarder/collectors has ever squabbled over the price of what truly is a 'priceless' treasure?] you too can be blessed with what truly is, in my personal estimation where woodland plants are concerned, the 'fairest of the fair!'

** Do not miss out on more of this new and exciting meme by visiting Joy's awesome blog. Thanks in advance!


CanadianGardenJoy said...

Sweetie thank you so much for joining in .. I am now wondering why the heck did I start all of this (my link gadget didn't work .. damnation !!)
I just spent 6 hours in the gardens trimming back, watering, planting a few plants .. rearranging others .. it has been an overwhelming day for me.
But those pictures of this beauty, oh how I so would like to have this one too! .. but I swore no more this year (other than the special lily bulbs coming for Fall planting .. I swear!)
This is a gorgeous informative post so thank you sweetie .. but I am giving this whole meme thing a second thought .. maybe reintroduce it later when we can't garden but we still THINK about it intensely ? LOL
Joy : )

Jean Campbell said...

I can see why Anemonopsis macrophylla is your fav. I'll only see on a blog. It would be a crispy critter here by mid-April.