- one of the finest Asian evergreen species
|Magnolia campbellii 'Darjeeling'|
|Magnolia 'Treve Holman'|
|Magnolia 'Wada's Memory'|
Wada was well-liked and highly respected by those Westerners he came into contact with, as revealed in a touching letter to the RHS Journal from Gwendolyn Anley, published in December 1947:
"The name of K. Wada is well known to many English gardeners as an exporter of choice Japanese plants. [...]
He visited this country about eight years ago and all who came in contact with him seem to have conceived a real liking for him. It came as a shock, therefore, when the rumour of his death at sea reached us. I have heard so many expressions of regret at his death that I think extracts from a letter recently received from him may be of interest to his many gardening friends in this country. It is certain that great sympathy will be felt for him in the loss of his wife and baby son in such tragic circumstances.
When I was in Japan ten years ago I saw a great deal of Wada San and visited him and his family at Numazu, where they showed me great kindness. His nursery... was then full of interesting plants as was also his private garden. [...] By some means he managed to get a letter through to us early in 1940 in which he expressed his sorrow for all that his English friends were called upon to endure at the hands of the Germans. He mentioned his great unpopularity in his own country on account of his pro-British sympathies. It has always remained a mystery how this incriminating letter escaped the very strict Japanese censorship.
It is obvious that he is still in the nursery business but it is problematical whether we shall be permitted to import plants for many years to come.
Mr Wada writes that during the War he was not levied into the army but was watched by the police owing to suspicion of being opposed to Japanese militarism. He worked in Tokyo, and both his house in Tokyo and later his house at Numazu were destroyed by bombs and his wife and son subsequently died from their injuries. He also writes "So far as the raising of new meritable plants of great future value are concerned the past seven years were not wasted. I have raised a wonderful strain of Azaleas, a wonderful coloured Rhododendron, a new strain of Rhododendron eminently desirable for gardens for the leaves, habit and flowers, a new hybrid Magnolia, a hybrid Hamamelis, many fine Camellias, etc." "