Holder: Alan Gray
Colchicums are perennials containing around 160 species which grow from bulb-like corms usually with coarse, broadly strap-shaped leaves which appear with or after the goblet-shaped flowers. The common names 'autumn crocus', 'meadow saffron' and 'naked lady' may be applied to the whole genus or to many of its species; they refer to the 'naked' crocus-like flowers which appear in late summer or autumn, long before the strap-like foliage which appears in spring. The collection consists of hardy garden colchicums from a wide range of historic and new sources. The collection is planted in the east park. There are also groups around the garden.
Best time to view: Mid Sep-end Oct
3rd March - 27th October,
Wednesday - Sunday, 12pm-5.30pm
East Ruston Old Vicarage
Norfolk NR12 9HN
Telephone: 01692 650432
Directions: Situated off the A149 near Stalham.
EUCOMIS spp & cvs
Holder: Richard Clark and Emma Forsberg
Eucomis or pineapple lilies are a genus of deciduous bulbous perennials that belong to the Hyacinthaceae and are native to rocky grasslands in Southern Africa. The structure of the plant is a basal rosette of leaves that bear flower spikes covered in star shaped flowers and topped with a distinctive leafy crown called the coma. The name Eucomis translates as 'beautiful hair' or 'good headed'. Overall, the plant has the appearance of a pineapple and hence bears the common name, 'Pineapple Lily'.
Eucomis has a lot to offer to UK gardening but, unfortunately, are not widely grown with many species and cultivars having limited availability. They are hardy exotics with striking architectural appeal and good garden performance. Additionally, they come in a wide range of sizes from dwarfs to giants with flowers ranging in colour from whites to greens and pinks through to purple, burgundy and deep maroon.
The national collection consists of Eucomis species, cultivars and hybrids having been grown in pots, under cover. This collection went on display at the Sandringham Flower Show in 2018 and it is planned to repeat this in 2019.
Open by appointmment only
Telephone: 01362 692460
Directions: on application.
Fuchsia cvs. introduced by James Lye
James Lye 1830 - 1906 was born in Market Lavington, Wiltshire, he became head gardener to the Hon Mrs Louisa Hay at Clyffe Hall, Market Lavington. He was renowned for growing fuchsias in pyramid style, some reaching 5-9 feet tall, and became known in 1886 as the 'Champion Fuchsia Grower in the West of England'. He exhibited many of his own introductions and is thought to have bred as many as a hundred cultivars between 1860 and 1901. Their characteristics are that they were sturdy, vigorous, hardy and long flowering with his ‘hallmark’ waxy white long tubes and sepals. The corollas of these plants were singles in tones of salmon, apricot, tangerine, pink and cerise. Since 2009 the collection has been sourced from both nursery stock and private UK collections, although there are plans to widen this search to Europe and America. The advent of the Wardian case, which was an enclosed glass case on a wooden base filled with soil in which plants were planted, enabled Fuchsias to be taken by sea as far as Australia. It is believed that over 70 of the cultivars have been lost and two cultivars, in particular are being sought to complete the collection of those remaining, they are 'Nellie' and 'James Welch' if you know of their whereabouts please contact the collection holder.
Further information here