Welcome to the Cornwall Group of Plant Heritage.
This is a basic website, written by our members and volunteers. We use it to show our activities and to keep a brief record of the National Collections in Cornwall.
Cornwall has a thriving and enthusiastic gardening community, keen to conserve less common garden plants and to share their knowledge and enthusiasm. Plant Heritage has a number of nationally organised schemes including the National Collections, the Plant Guardianship scheme and the Threatened Plants Project to address the loss of diversity from our gardens.
Plant Heritage has always believed in conservation through cultivation. We can all help to secure species and cultivars of garden plants by propagating and distributing them. In Cornwall we bring plants to a number of Garden Fairs and Plant Sales through the year and large numbers of plants find new homes as a result. Any money raised helps us to organise meetings and raise the profile of garden plant conservation (and pay for this website).
In addition we have the Plant Nannies project where people can volunteer to grow a plant they like in their own garden and nurture it so that it can be propagated and distributed further, helping to ensure its security in cultivation.
Through the website we try to record details of our activities and the plants we have worked with so that you can see what we are doing. All of this work is done by volunteers and there is always more to do. We may not be able to secure the future of all the garden plants grown in Cornwall but we can make a start. Each plant has a story behind it, a history of introduction, a discoverer or breeder. Each plant has a significance in our gardens, a part to play or a particular role. We want to record the stories of the garden plants around us so that furure generations will understand what we grow and why it mattered to us.
If you would like to join with us, to propagate or research, raise funds, express opinions or even make tea (my goodness, gardeners can really drink tea) you will be very welcome.
16th August 2019
A pity that we were unable to organise a suitable date for a visit to the Hemerocallis collection at Antony House. The collection reflects a pivotal time in day lily breeding as the older and simpler cultivars started to give way to brighter, frillier flower forms and new colours. Hopefully we will visit next year on their Hemerocallis open day. Hot weather, a fast season and a shortage of time conspired against us this year.
On a more positive note, the Plant Nannies event at Tremenheere Rare Plant Fair is coming up on Sunday 8th September from 10.00 to 2.00. It would be lovely to see you there.
26th March 2019
A fabulous sunny spring afternoon for our visit to the National Collection of Camellia japonica cultivars in the woodland garden at Antony House. A group of us assembled to enjoy the camellias in full flower among the trees and beside the coast. A range of other interesting woodland plants and shrubs enhance the plantings. A recent planting of Magnolias has now reached flowering size and were looking magnificent at the top of the valley.
12th December 2018
After a very successful year we are planning a range of events for 2019. The first of these will be our Annual Meeting on 29th January and hopefully we will have confirmation of the full list by then.
5th May 2018
The Cornwall Hardy Plant Society Plant Sale took place on a sunny Saturday, which encouraged the public out to buy plants. Our stand did very well, thanks to everyone who brought plants or helped out on the day. I don't have the details yet but we certainly made more money than last year and I think I spoke to more people about the work of Plant Heritage than ever before.
17th April 2018
The spring weather has been especially fickle this year. It wasn't looking good for our visit to Caerhays but as we walked up from the beach car park into the garden the wind dropped and although the skies didn't clear, the light rain did.
The early flowering tree Magnolia had been caught by the frost in March, as they had been throughout the county but we arrived in time to see a good display of the later cultivars in the National Collection. The evergreen species (particularly those that were previously Michelia) had stood up well to the frost and the first of them were in flower. It is one of the great strengths of the National Collections that they allow comparison between the plants in a group and it was particularly pleasing to see new plantings of many of the most recent cultivars starting to flower.
The garden is filled with a remarkable variety of spring flowering shrubs and remains open until June.
13th March 2018
Our trip to visit the "Wilson 50" collection of Kurume Azaleas at Trewidden went well. We were very lucky with the weather. Particular thanks to Richard Morton for showing us around and telling us about progress in the collection. There are a few cultivars still missing but he believes he has located sources for them in Japan. He hopes to be able to complete the collection in the next five years.
He is currently clearing space in the garden to plant an Azaleas Bowl, where he hopes to display the whole collection. It is possible that some of the missing cultivars are not hardy enough to plant outside, in which case he will grow stock plants under cover to protect them through the winter. If you haven't visited Trewidden, it is a remarkable garden and well worth a trip.
15th February 2018
I have just attended the Devon Group committee meeting looking at the issue of recruiting volunteers to help with the many diverse tasks that Plant Heritage carries out to support garden plant conservation. I think the conclusion was that we need more volunteers to help. If you're in Devon and prepared to lend a hand, contact them directly. If you are interested in joining our efforts in Cornwall contact us and if you are anywhere in the world and prepared to spend some time researching the stories of the plants we are working with please get in touch, we would love to hear from you.
30th January 2018
Our Annual Branch meeting went very well. Thanks to the representatives from National Collections who talked to us about their work. John Price gave us an insight into the collection of Camellia reticulata cultivars and hybrids at Tregothnan. Plants are now well established through the garden and should be looking good for their charity open day in April. Richard Morton from Trewidden spoke about his trips to Japan seeking the original 'Wilson 50' Kurume Azaleas and his progress propagating and planting them in the garden. Fern Carroll-Smith introduced us to the new collection of Kniphofia held at the Eden Project and showed pictures from the site. She highlighted some of the problems of correct identification and the value of Nationaol Collections in correcting mistakes.
Charlie Pridham showed us the Honeysuckles he has gathered together and led us through the process of building a new collection. Special thanks to Liz Pridham for her heroic effort making lunch which was much appreciated all round.
Our next meeting will be our stand at Cornwall Hardy Plant Society's plant sale on Saturday 4th May 2019.
It will be good to see you if you can come, even better if you can bring some garden plants to sell!.