So many varieties to choose from

If your requirements go beyond the normal, and you fancy trying different cultivars, they can be sourced at a specialist nursery.

By The Newsroom
Sunday, 30 December, 2018, 16:49
Scented pelargonium Robin has turned out a success. Picture by Tom Pattinson.

Allwoods (www.allwoods.net or 01273 844229), is a long-established firm, which specialises in pelargoniums and pinks.

It offers around two dozen varieties of scented geranium covering the fragrances pine, musk, peppermint, apple, lemon, cinnamon, balsam and rose.

Attar of Roses has pink flowers and rose-scented leaves, whilst crispum ‘Variegatum’ is a well-established favourite of gardeners and floral artists alike. It offers cream and green foliage, clear lemon scent and pink flowers.

The compact form of ‘Odoratissimum’ sports tiny white flowers, but emanates a green apple fragrance. I love handling the large, soft, velvety-grey leaves of ‘Tomentosum’, the bonus being fingers with a strong peppermint smell.

Two years ago, we decided to increase a modest collection by adding six jumbo plug plants. They arrived in good condition and were potted-up.

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A year later it was a case of five successes, with a new generation of cuttings from each under way, but one had struggled to survive.

‘Robin’ was its name, a rare and unusual variety with leaves emitting a strong musky odour.

Refusing to give up on it, the lady of the house stood the pot in a fully sunlit window and withheld water completely. It perked up and had put on new growth as autumn approached. Leading up to mid-December, the appearance of flower buds heightened anticipation, and you can probably guess the flower colour and date it chose to open. Christmas is special, even to plants.

Happy gardening in the year ahead.