Saturday, 31 December 2011

Plant of the Year 2011


White Papaver somniferum
I grow thousands of different plants in this garden, so choosing one as plant of the year is quite invidious. However, looking back through the year's images there was one clear winner - the pure white Papaver somniferum. For impact and beauty it was outstanding, with its big white blooms floating above the new growth in the new border - elegant and refined yet absolutely simple. The seed came from Sibylle Kreutzberger, who told me the story of its origin earlier this year. When she and Pam Schwerdt were at Sissinghurst they wanted a white poppy for the White Garden, but could not locate any through the normal horticultural sources. They had seen pictures of fields of white poppies in Afghanistan, so knew they existed, but how to get seed? Eventually they obtained seed from the local baker, who would otherwise have sprinkled bread with it, and from it grew perfect white poppies, of which these are direct descendants.

6 comments:

  1. What a lovely story, its one of the things I enjoy most about horticulture the stories behind plants. Such a pretty flower too

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  2. Wuauww, WHITE poppies. Wish I could get seeds next year for my white garden. They´re just amazingly pretty. Pure white! I´ll look for them here in Denmark.
    Happy New Year!
    Best regards, Fie.

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  3. Well chosen John, they look stunning in your garden.
    Happy New Year

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  4. Absolutely stunning poppy. Great pictures.

    Happy New Year

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  5. Great story.

    Happy New Year.

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  6. Yes, its a lovely story about a beautiful plant. A perfect colour for a white garden.
    Greeting from my garden in Germany and a happy new year from Thomas Vollmert.
    www.ein-garten-im-sauerland.de

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