I have written already about some worries for various diva plants in the garden not making it through the winter. This is all usual stuff, you are used to my anxieties dear readers and 'que cera' as Doris would sing. Yet I whilst I am busy looking over here and angsting away something has been happening over there.
The first significant drought casualty I became aware of was the rather lovely Hamamelis in the Accidental Shrubbery. I think it is Arnold's Promise, but in truth I am not sure. I must have planted this shrub in the garden quite soon after I moved in. I think it was probably the second Spring I lived here so a good 15/16 years ago and it had settled in well. It always flowered first of my hamamelis and ne'er had a poorly looking day..... until this summer when I failed to notice how much it was struggling and it upped and died. Well, I say died, I think there might be some shoots coming up from the stump, so I have some threads of hope. It might them a few years to be very much.
Losing my hamamelis is quite a blow. I do have three others but none of them as mature as this one. Then more bad news has followed: when I was out in the garden today I looked at my Prunus beni-chidori - a favourite favourite early blossoming tree that has the most wonderful scent. It usually flowers mid/late February and I was looking to see how its blossom buds were doing, expecting to see them looking pink and plump and on the verge of opening.
They were not doing, there was no pink, there was no sign of plumpness. I looked towards the top of the tree, which must be a good 10 foot or so tall, but nothing, nada. I gave the twigs a bit of a bend, but they felt dry. I made a little cut into the bark to see if it looked 'wick' (green) underneath, but no, it was brown and deadlooking.
Ragley Hall. I had not seen one of these trees previously and it was love at first sight. Every year it grew well and blossomed beautifully. Every year its scent would fill the garden and now there is no sign of such scent; I fear it is no more. I shall give it a few weeks to see if any leaves do appear but I am not holding my breath.
I shall have to decide whether to plant another, I most likely will but I will put it somewhere else in the garden, for whilst I am sad it is also an opporunity, to rethink, reconsider and make a new plan.
Now to go back and stare at my Edgeworthia and my tree ferns..... so much to wait and hope for......