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Graham Rice's New Plants Blog

Graham Rice Garden writer and plantsman Northamptonshire and Pennsylvania

Editor-in-Chief of the RHS Encyclopedia of Perennials; writer for a wide range of newspapers and magazines including The Garden and The Plantsman; member of the RHS Herbaceous Plant Committee and Floral Trials Committee; author of many books on plants and gardens.

  • Date Joined: 18 Oct 2006

Warmenhoven: New at Hampton Court ‘09

Posted by Graham Rice on 09 Jul 2009 at 04:26 PM

Allium 'Dready'. Image: GardenPhotos.comThe exhibits of alliums from Warmenhoven are always a big highlight of the Hampton Court Palace Flower show, and of the Chelsea Flower Show as well, and in recent years the alliums with the familiar big rounded heads have been joined by varieties in a very different style.

These are varieties without flowers. Instead the heads are topped by clusters of bulbils from which grow slender new leaves. These are almost exclusively cut-flower varieties, although they would also be interesting grown through bushier plants in containers. ‘Hair' was the first and at this week's show two more in the same style were on show.

Allium ‘Dready' (above, click to enlarge) is a heavier, more tangled version of the very finely structured ‘Hair'. A slim, dark green stem is topped by clusters of bulbils that start green then become redder over time and from which emerge slim and dark green leaves, some of which are absolutely upright and some of which are twisted.

Allium 'Bizar'. Image:‘Bizar', by contrast, has stouter stems and has altogether more substance. The larger red bulbils in the head are up to 12mm/1/2in across and the leaves which emerge from them are strikingly tall and almost all upright - and all feature another small clusters of bulbils at their tips.

These two varieties are too new to be featured on the Warmenhoven website, so contact them for details.



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