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Whisley glasshouse

Discussion in 'Tropical Gardening' started by PeterS, Nov 23, 2017.

  1. PeterS

    PeterS Total Gardener

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    A short while ago I passed Wisley and visited their glasshouse. Its an inspiration in its own right, and I took pictures to show friends at Ripley Castle, who are in the process of redoing their own glass house.

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    Succulent/cactus bed. Whilst the picture doesn't show it, its not flat but pleasantly undulating.

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    Musa sikkimensis 'Red Tiger'. Wisley is a wonderful combination of height combined with lower plants and ground cover. There is essentially no bare earth.

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    Amorphophallus titanum - the giant stink flower. Even when not in flower it is a really impressing plant.

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    Heliconia schiedeana. This is said to be the hardiest of all Heliconias and might even survive outside in the mildest of areas.

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    An example of the ground cover.

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    Fafugium

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    Irescine lindenii. The variety of different ground cover was very impressive. But you just don't see Irescine plants or seed offered.

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    Nice range of shapes with a Strelitzia (Bird of Paradise)in the foreground

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    Justicia rizzinii. A lovely bush, the flowers are small so the picture just doesn't do it justice. This normally flowers for me in the spring - so I was surprised to see this in the autumn.
     
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    • Gail_68

      Gail_68 Beauty blooms in the garden as well as the heart.

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      Fantastic shots and I do adore the first picture peter :thumbsup::)
       
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      • PeterS

        PeterS Total Gardener

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        Musa velutina producing small pink bananas. I understand that it only grows to about 5 feet so is quite practical.

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        Pseudorhipsalis ramulosa. An epyphitic cactus with stems up to 70 cms, which can turn bright violet red in full sun.

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        Senecio harworthii - I have discovered there are some spectacular Senecios ( and some awful ones - Ragwort).

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        This won't last long :smile:. Ravenala madagascariensis - Traveller's Palm. Its a truly spectacular relative of the Bird of Paradise plant, but it will be 30 feet tall and through the roof within a couple of years.
         
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        • Gail_68

          Gail_68 Beauty blooms in the garden as well as the heart.

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          Peter there's some terrific plants there..what a lovely place stroll and take in beauty at it's best :)
           
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          • PeterS

            PeterS Total Gardener

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            Pachystachys lutea. This made a lovely display. Its a member of the Acanthus family and flowers for a very long period. The flowers themselves are white and not that long lived, but the bracts are yellow and stay for a long time.

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            Strongylodon macrobotrys - Green Jade Vine. This has to be the pinnacle of every glasshouse. It normally flowers in the spring, so I was surprised to see a small amount of bloom in the autumn.

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            Polyscias guilfoylei. Wisley had so many plants I had never heard of before.

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            Thunbergia mysorensis (thanks @longk for my introduction to this).

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            This picture was taken on holiday in Italy, but I have to show it here as its Thunbergia grandiflora. Its a climber and normally covers a wall with flowers. But in this case the flowers had the same hanging habit as the mysorensis - I had never seen that before. I understand that when flowers hang down in racemes like this they are usually pollinated by bats.

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            More Thunbergia mysorensis. I loved the feeling of being enclosed by overhanging foliage, but at the same time being spacious.
             
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            • PeterS

              PeterS Total Gardener

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              Heliconia latispatha. I have only recently taken an interest in Heliconia, which has to be one of the most exotic of tropical plants. Going round Wisley I was amazed to see that they had 4 or 5 different species. Outside of Wisley and Kew you will very, very rarely see one.

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              Schaueria flavicoma Golden Plume. Its a small shrub from Brazil. Another member of the Acanthus family with white/yellow flowers, and yellow wispy bracts that last a long time. Totally new to me - but no chance of ever finding it on sale.

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              Helicoia stricta. This is quite a practical one (if you can provide the heat and humidity over winter) as stricta only grows from 1 to 5 feet tall. There was a bed of these- only one foot tall. You can see why Heliconias are called False Bird of Paradise Flowers.

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              Another Heliconia. There was no label for this, but I think it is H. psitticorum, which is another practical one that grows to 5 feet or less. There are many different cultivars and I am growing a couple in my conservatory. I have an orange one that has been sending up a series of flowering shoots for months now.

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              This is a fun one. Strophanthus preussii - the Poison Arrow Vine. It's a climber from West Africa, where local tribes will coat the tips of arrows with the sap from the stem. I gather that they use more than one plant, and this one will put you to sleep rather than kill you. Who said gardening isn't dangerous :rolleyespink:.

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              This was outside and is an annual. Amaranthus 'Garnet Red'. I must see if I can get some seeds as this one was over 8 feet tall - now that's impressive and exotic.
               
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              • Verdun

                Verdun Passionate gardener

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                Fabulous pictures PeterS. Most of those are new to me :). Esp the haliconias; they are amazing :wow:

                The tropical biome at Eden, not too far from me, has a huge collection of rare and unusual glasshouse plants. Worth a visit :)
                 
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                • PeterS

                  PeterS Total Gardener

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                  Thanks Verdun. What a lucky man to be so close to Eden. I would love to go back there again, and again. You learn every time. My only complaint about Eden is that there weren't many plant labels telling you what they are. But then I think it has decided to be a place of entertainment, rather than Wisley which is very much a place of learning
                   
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                  • Verdun

                    Verdun Passionate gardener

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                    Think they have improved that side of it Peter.....I went in the summer and labelling was pretty good I thought. Amazing growth of things we only see in our homes :)
                    You have encouraged me to take a pen and notebook next time though :)
                     
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                    • Irmemac

                      Irmemac Super Gardener

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                      How kind to go to the trouble of posting all those lovely photos Peter, and for the comments with them. I feel like I have just been on a trip there, and am grateful you posted them. Thank you.
                       
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                      • longk

                        longk Total Gardener

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                        I need to go there @PeterS !
                        Strophanthus preussii is especially nice :blue thumb:

                        Just go back in the spring and lift some of the self seeders - they will be over-run with them!
                         
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                        • PeterS

                          PeterS Total Gardener

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                          And a camera, I hope. :smile:

                          Good point LongK - it does self seed everywhere.

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                          I did try to grow Strophanthus preussii from seed - but it died after a while. However I do have a good sized S. speciosus (picture above from the internet). Hopefully mine is close to flowering size - its another pretty weird flower, and also known as the Poisoned Arrow Vine.
                           
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                          • Verdun

                            Verdun Passionate gardener

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                            Yes, camera too PeterS:)
                             
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                            • Mark56

                              Mark56 Super Gardener

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                              Great pictures, I am a big fan of RHS Wesley and often visit as it's not too far.
                               
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                              • strongylodon

                                strongylodon Old Member

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                                You saw me there @PeterS!!:biggrin:
                                It seems to be much improved since I went last and 'I' wasn't in flower. I will try to get there next year.
                                 
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