Galega - Ixia
Plant names highlighted in green have images attached, click to view.
Galega ‘His Majesty’ £5
Spreads to make a splendid mound of glaucous pea foliage, topped by long spikes of strongly bicoloured violet flowers in early summer. Height to 1m at end of flowering. Extremely satisfactory.
Galega orientalis £5
Very distinct from the usual officinalis/hartlandii varieties in its upright spikes of indigo blue pea flowers. Pale green foliage, loosely spreading habit. Height to 1.2m. Sunny site.
Geum coccineum ‘Eos’ £4
Kevin Marsh’s eyeboggling selection of the true violently orange flowered coccineum. This one has bright yellow leaves. Has to be seen to be believed, but not nearly as tasteless as you might imagine. A real hot dog.
Geum hybrids: classic border plants for any normal soil in sun or part shade. All these are summer flowering, and 30-40cm tall in flower. All £4
‘Abendsonne’ Soft orange flashed burnt orange. Effective.
‘Fire Opal’ AGM Fiery orange-red, large open flowers.
‘Herterton Primrose’ Nice nodding flowers with yellow petals (brighter than ‘Lemon Drops’) contrasting very well with the red sepals and flower stems.
‘Lemon Delight’ First year we’ve listed this rarely offered variety. Flowers of the shallow bowl type, in a very pale creamy yellow. Not a double, but with extra petals held neatly as part of the bowl’s rim. Selected by Dave Knox of Stoke-on-Trent
‘Mandarin’ Tall (50cm) with very big coppery orange flowers late in the season. Excellent but slow to propagate.
‘Mrs W. Moore’ Nodding flowers in pastel red.
Gunnera perpensa £5
The African representative of a classic Gondwanic genus, the River Pumpkin has modestly sized leaves and dark red flower spikes to 40cm or so. Strongly deciduous, and hardy in milder parts of Britain. Keep well moist when in growth.
Hacquetia epipactis AGM £4
Ground level umbels with petal-like bracts from late winter – the effect is of yellow-green, roughly primrose-sized flowers. An easy, densely clumping small woodland perennial.
Helenium ‘Red Jewel’ £5
A dark, slightly purplish red. Not one of the depressing ones which are essentially brown.
Helenium ‘Sahin’s Early Flowerer’ AGM £5
The great thing about this 1m tall cultivar is the extraordinarily rich and changing colours of the flowers. The rays open a light orangey yellow. As they expand they become increasingly streaked with bright red, ending up a rich burnt orange. Flowers at all stages mixed over the plant are unfailingly interesting. The more I see others, the more I like this.
Helianthus salicifolius £5
Exceeding 2m, this fine leaved spreading plant makes a lovely lacy, constantly moving backdrop to other perennials. The bright yellow, rather small daisies are pleasant while they last, but it’s the foliage you grow it for.
Helianthus perhaps not ‘Monarch’ £5
Big, bold, brassy – just fine for the late summer border. This classic variety runs, but not insanely so, and on a fertile soil can be head high. The sunflowers are quite big as the perennials go, with rich golden yellow rays, stiff and incurved. Several related plants go under this name. After a conversation with a wise owl in Worcestershire, I think this may not be semi-double enough, huge enough or sufficiently prone to die on you to be the original thing. But I’m working on it. We like it very much.
Helleborus x ericsmithii £4.50
A very fine hybrid caulescent hellebore (niger x (argutifolius x lividus)). The leaves have a metallic grey tint, with 40cm stems of pink tinged white flowers from late winter. Sun, reasonable drainage.
Heloniopsis acutifolia £3.75
Rosettes of narrow leaves with inflorescences of white, pink tinged flowers. 15cm. Woodsy conditions.
Heloniopsis kawanoi £3.75
An uncommon dwarf species: umbels of white flowers over clean green rosettes.
Heloniopsis tubiflora ‘Temple Blue’ £4
We steered clear of this robust species for years, since it seemed to look as if it was dying most of the time. This collection, however, is a healthy green all year round, clumps up beautifully, and has flowers of a very attractive soft lavender blue. Previously listed as H. orientalis Korean form
Herbertia lahue £3.75
A cheery little iridaceous corm from Argentina, with bright violet flowers. Grown in pots with minimal protection, so far. Bulks up well.
Hesperantha (Schizostylis) coccinea palest pink £4.50
In the search for a really excellent white, we’ve acquired all sorts of things which don’t quite make it. This one (a Kevin Marsh special) is excellent, absolutely not white, but a well formed delicate pastel pink, with plenty of substantial flowers.
Hesperantha oligantha £3.75
That freaky wetlander H. coccinea gives us the wrong idea about this important genus of African irids. Most are relatively small winter growers, suiting a pan of gritty compost in the unheated greenhouse, dry in summer. This particularly easy and prolific species has magenta flowers in spring. Once you have spares – and you will – try them out in a raised bed or trough.
Heuchera americana ‘Harry Hay’ £5
A gigantic plant, forming a dome of purple foliage more than 50cm high and topping 1m in flower. Impressive. Selected by the man himself.
X Hippeastrelia £5
This is the name for Hippeastrum x Sprekelia. There are several clones about, never that common. We self-pollinated ‘Durgha Pradhan’ and got excellent seed; the seedlings survived remarkable levels of cold, water at the wrong times of year, and general neglect. Those that have flowered look much like the parent, rich dark red, large flowered, with more than a hint of zygomorphy. A few spares for you to try.
Hippeastrum x acramannii £6
We don’t always do well with hippeastrums, but 5 or 6 years experience of this old hybrid has been a joy. It’s a reasonably hardy (that doesn’t mean fully hardy in the open garden, but it’s taken some hard frosts) summer grower, producing its rich, strong red flowers on sturdy, not overtall stems reliably each summer.
Hosta sp. aff. rectifolia AGSJ302 £4.50
Really tall (to 1.4m) stems of many (30-40 per stem) good sized flowers in a shade of violet which, by Hosta standards, is really deep. Planted in a moist fertile bed, in flower with candelabra primulas and Anemone rivularis, a well established clump is a real treat for us. Undistinguished yellowy green foliage, but who cares - something this tall needs planting well back in the bed. Identification still unclear, and there is a proposal to call it ‘Brian Halliwell’, who was on the expedition. Someone alerted us to a stray sentence, the ghost of another deleted entry, which seemed to imply that it’s tender. Of course it’s hard as nails, unlike my proofreadingx.
Hosta venusta £4
The famous minute hosta. You know it of course, just as you know by now why it’s the previous Governor of California’s favourite plant...
Hyacinthoides non-scriptus long-bracteate white £6
The bracts of bluebells, both English and Spanish, vary a bit in length. Very occasionally one finds a plant with ridiculously long, green, leaflike bracts. Hardly known except among a subgroup of hardcore bulb nuts, they can be very handsome, easy and different-looking garden plants. This is the first we have enough of to be able to offer. It’s white flowered, about 30cm tall, with hanging green bracts several centimetres long, bulking up as freely as any other form in the garden. Probably pure non-scriptus, but I can’t rule out a touch of hybridity (introgression being what it is, I doubt anyone ever can in this genus).
Impatiens arguta £4
A 30cm tall species with good-sized lilac-blue flowers over a long season. No evidence of dangerous seeding tendencies. Mild position, or replaced annually from summer cuttings (easy).
Impatiens forrestii £4.50
A bushy, low growing woodlander with large flowers of a rich, dusky reddish purple. Still very uncommon, and a perennial, despite Flora of China claiming it as an annual. A gift from Lynsey Pink, who finds it hardy in her Hampshire garden, losing it in pots overwinter. We give young plants winter protection in pots.
Impatiens namchabarwensis £4
Quite recently described Tibetan, with wonderful blue flowers. A bushy plant, reaching 40cm or so, it is essentially an annual unless well protected, but comes back readily from self sown seed, appearing as late as May. Light shade. AUTUMN ONLY – and protect the plant.
This variable species is hardy, densely clumping by rhizomes, and suiting light shade. The foliage dies down at the first whiff of frost, but don’t be fooled. The flowers are almost an afterthought at the end of the summer, but are pretty and pale orange to yellow. We offer several clones, but have rejected the original clone of British gardens (we used to call it clone 1) in favour of better ones. Here goes:
Impatiens omeiana DJHC98492 £5
Narrow leaves with smart pale veining, toothed a little more snappily than the old clone 1. Pale orange flowers
Impatiens omeiana ‘Ice Storm’ £5
Pale uniformly silvered leaves and yellow flowers. More impressive in flower than most, and reaching 50cm sometimes. Brought to Europe by Michael ‘Cally’ Wickenden, we previously listed it as ‘clone 2’.
Impatiens omeiana reddest form £5
Wonderful, and new to us, so we’ve rushed ahead and have little ones ready for you. The stems and leaf backs are wine red; the leaf veins are a bright, almost magenta pink; the teeth on the leaf margins are red too.
Impatiens rothii £4.50
A rather imposing perennial species, 1m in height, with pink flowers. It dies down to deeply buried tubers in winter. Despite being native to central Ethiopia, it is hardy in a warm sunny border. It does not set seed for us, a good feature in a balsam.
Impatiens puberula HWJK 2063 £4
A Hinkley / Wynn-Jones collection from E. Nepal whose good sized purple-blue flowers have white spurs. Makes a dense branchy clump, 20cm high. Really rather tough.
Impatiens stenantha £4
Bushy little thing with mustard yellow flowers in late spring and summer, over dark green leaves and red stems. Hardy at chilly Rosemoor (not sure I would be).
Ipheion ‘Alberto Castillo’ £4
Very large, pure white flowered form of this well known clumping bulb for a sunny site. Found in an old garden in Buenos Aires by its namesake. The species of lpheion and Tristagma (which arguably should be a single genus) are poorly known and deserve more attention from gardeners and botanists.
Ipheion ‘Jessie’ £4
As prolific and hardy as uniflorum, but with as good a blue flower as the more tender ‘Rolf Fiedler’.
Ipheion sellowianum £3.75
Yellow with a brown streak on the backs, in spring. Much shorter than hirtellum. Protect from slugs, and all will be well.
Ipheion sessile £3.75
Stemless white flowers, dark veined on the backs, over a long winter / early spring season. Probably best in a pot. Winter growing. Thanks to Ian Hunt, National Collection holder.
Ipheion uniflorum ‘Charlotte Bishop’ £4
The classic species, but with dusky pink, quite large flowers, from early spring.
Ipheion uniflorum ssp. tandiliense £4
Basically white, with a lilac tinge and vein, it’s hard to say why this form is so very good. It has poise, something about the way it holds the flowers well above the tidy leaves.
Iris blue Louisiana hybrid £5
Large flowers of a marvellous intense blue - some people might call it violet-blue but I definitely don’t. Flowers freely every year for us. Needs plenty of summer moisture. Thanks to Prof. Dick, who obtained it years ago in Iris Society circles.
Iris chrysographes black form £4
Beautifully shaped flowers on delicate 50cm stems over dense tufts of leaves in early summer; sun lovers. So dark a purple it looks black.
Iris confusa ‘Martyn Rix’ £5
Bamboo like stems to 1m topped by fans of pale green leaves, with branched inflorescences of many flat faced clear blue flowers. Grow it in a shady spot in moist soil; cut out the flowered stems after the flowers finish in early summer. Forms a biggish clump, so give it space somewhere it will blend into the scenery until flowering time.
Iris ensata ‘Iso-no-nami’ £5
Unlike some of the Japanese water irises, the light purple, neatly yellow-marked flowers, have exquisite form. The falls hang just so, and are not crumpled at all. Easy and floriferous in moister or wet soil, in sun. 1m.
Iris ensata 'Pin Stripe' £5
Broad, pale lilac falls lightly veined purple all over, with a small yellow flash. This is one of the varieties carrying a mutation which makes the standards develop as a second whorl of falls, making six in all. The mid-purple style branches make a nice contrast in the middle of the flower. One you grow for colour, not form. Wet, 1m again.
Iris histriodes ‘Major’ £3.75
One of the early spring (winter, really) flowering bulbous sorts, with flowers of a very deep blue, marked white. A lovely thing which cheers us up when we come upon it on a miserable winter day.
Iris japonica from Monty Cohen £6
A peculiarly good form of a familiar Evansia iris. The canes are rather longer than is usual, really noticeable, without being anything like as long as in confusa, with a nice purple stain to the base; the leaves are lush and broad, and the flowers are ‘blue rinse’ white, lilac on the style branches, with the usual bright yellow crest on the falls. It is, for sure, one of the best of these types. A gift from Victoria Logue, whose mother had it from one Monty Cohen many years ago. Victoria has quite a collection of cane-formers, and brings the dispassionate eye of an accountant to their relative merits. She too rates this one highly.
Iris laevigata ‘Monstrosa’ £5
One of those big wet-growing irises in which the standards develop as 3 extra falls, heavily violet freckled, merging to make a solid patch near the tip, on a white ground.
Iris x robusta ‘Gerald Darby’ £5
A stout clumper with striking purple bases to the leaves and nicely formed violet flowers on 1m+ stems. For moister (or downright wet) soils, in sun.
Iris (Hermodactylus) tuberosa £4
The tuberous Mediterranean classic, dormant in summer, with ‘chocolate lime’ flowers in spring. Sun, drainage. Back with its relatives after a spell in monotypic purdah.
Iris tuberosa MS821 £4.50
It’s not well known among gardeners that there is significant colour variation in wild populations of Widow Iris. This beautiful one, collected by Mike Salmon, has a big inky blue-black patch on the falls, on a turquoise ground.
Iris versicolor ‘Mysterious Monique’ £5
Useful species this, making lusty evergreen clumps in moister places, but variable, so pick your variety well. This one is great, with purple standards and style crests; falls darkest purple, yellow and white at base with heavy purple veining.
Iris Dwarf Bearded Varieties (all £4)
We’ve little time for tall or intermediate bearded iris (sorry, no offence, they’re just not to our taste) but find that the dwarfs somehow do it for us. Even those with horizontal falls, to which I’d give a very old-fashioned look if taller, do their stuff when viewed from above. I long believed that GST once wrote of them as ‘garden toys’, but after extensive searching came to the conclusion that this was just wishful thinking. None take up as much space as a climbing frame. (Historical note for youngsters No. 3: GST = the late Graham Thomas, at different times a big cheese with Sunningdale Nurseries and the National Trust; influential writer, hugely knowledgeable and possessed of impeccable taste. You can tell I was impressed...)
‘Blue Line’ AGMTissuey grey-white with a light blue beard.
‘Cherry Garden’ Intense red-purple self.
‘Frosty Crown’ Yellow falls, white standards.
‘Little Blackfoot’ Deep purple falls with blue beard, lighter standards.
‘Picadee’ White with violet-blue edging and veining, slight on falls, heavy on standards.
Ixia viridiflora £4.50
This is the Ixia you want... Good sized turquoise flowers with a maroon basal blotch in May, on upright (not top-heavy) spikes. Plenty of them too, not 2 or 3 on top of a long wispy stem. Winter growing, ideal for a pot in the unheated or greenhouse or alpine house, needing a dry summer dormancy. An absolute classic, but too rarely seen.
For all those interested in South African plants we've also put all our listings of South African
bulbs and plants onto one website we've called South African Bulbs at Desirable Plants.
The order forms below can be filled in electronically for sending by e-mail, or printed, for sending by post. See Ordering and Carriage. The *.doc file is included for those who have Microsoft Word or Open Office; for those who don't a *.rtf file has been included and this will open Wordpad, which is usually included with all Microsoft operating systems. If you have any problems please E-Mail us.
Order Form (Microsoft Word Format *.doc)
Order Form (Rich Text Format *.rtf)
Order Form (PDF Format *.pdf)