A THOUSAND WORDS - Alex Waterhouse-Hayward's blog on pictures, plants, politics and whatever else is on his mind.




 

Aconitum carmichaelii 'Arendsii' & Rosemary My Wifely Plant Snob
Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Aconitum carmichaelli 'Arendsii'

My wife is a plant snob in the good sense. By this I mean that she likes plants not common in most gardens not because she likes to boast about them but for another reason for which I can only guess.


Most of us conventional gardeners like to have a nice colourful garden in the spring that extends to summer. But by the end of October it is a bit cold to sit on a garden bench to look at a decaying garden with few plants in bloom,

My Rosemary has a fondness for hellebores which flower in very early spring before I am not quite ready to go out to it. And in the fall she has a love for the extremely poisonous (I must treat her well!) aconites or aconitums. Most of these tall plants have blue flowers. Any plant snob, with any kind of sophistication like my Rosemary’s, would understand that a true blue is the most beautiful colour in a garden. Only a pure white can compare.

It took 20 years before Rosemary accepted any orange and it had to be through the introduction in our garden of Rosa ‘Westerland’ which is a brilliant orange rose with the scent of artificial apricot jam.

It takes me much longer to realize how right Rosemary is about her plant choices. Today I asked her why she liked her aconitums and in particular the tall Aconitum carmichaelii 'Arendsii'  (anywhere from 6 to 7 ft) you see here. She said, “I like them because they are tall but do not flop (I would argue with her about that) and they bloom now when nothing else is around.



I’d better not show too much interest in these aconitums as if I do Rosemary will transfer her interest to something else. On the other hand that could be a good thing as I would then learn all about a plant that in most cases would be outside my so limited radar.

 
 
 
 
 


Geranium 'Rozanne'
                                                                                   

Brother Cadfael's poison



     

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