Wisley Alpine Log
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Wisley's Alpine Log
By Paul Cumbleton

Log 8th 10 April 2008

With the last two logs on Hepatica, a month has gone by with little else in the department being mentioned. In that time, winter came and went and returned again it seemed. Despite this, warmer days have brought on many spring flowers and the whole department is looking fresh and colourful. The alpine meadow in particular has been splendid of late, with swathes of narcissus bulbocodium which are just now beginning to go over somewhat.

Narcissus bulbocodium

There are many other things in the meadow. Last year we put in some Primula denticulata, flowering now for the first time among the Narcissus

Primula denticulata in the meadow

Fritillaria meleagris also pops up here and there

Fritillaria meleagris

Though most are the usual purple or white shades, occasionally a different one occurs. I particularly liked this one:

Fritillaria melegris variant

There are also lots of anemones in shades of pink blue and white

Anemones in meadow 1

Anemones in meadow 2

Inevitably the warmer days have meant the weeds have got going more strongly. Here Rose, one of our volunteers is weeding one of the narrow beds next to the large pools.

Rose weeding

She was kept company by a hungry Robin, while the Carp in the pool also looked on from down below:



The rest of the rock garden is waking up. The pulsatillas are really good at the moment:

Pulsatilla vulgaris

Pulsatilla vulgaris red form

Spring bulbs still keep going such as this Muscari 'Blue Star'

Muscari 'Blue Star'

Further along the pool edges, the Gunnera whose 'wigwam' protection I showed being put on in an earlier log has burst into growth. Unfortunately the first unfurling leaves have been hit by the recent frosts. This often happens but there is nothing to worry about - there will be plenty of other new leaves produced later which will be OK

Gunnera hit by frost

At the very top of the Rock garden a cherry looks brilliant at the moment

Prunus pendula 'Pendula Rosea'

Also flowering now but indoors are the Leucocorynes from South America. This one is L. coquimbensis:

Leucocoryne coquimbensis

Finally, last Sunday reminded us that winter still returns sometimes and we had snow. One picture from home I couldn't resist sharing because of the contrast was of something we often think of as Tropical but here in the snow:

Ring Necked Parakeet and snow

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