Sunday, January 02, 2011

A Quick Treat for the New Year

The new year is finally here, woohoo! Looking forward to another fruitful year in the garden, and the eventual arrival of spring!

We've had a lovely Christmas and New Year's celebration, but it's also nice that the festive season is finally over and everything will go back to normal mode in the next few days. No more thinking about gifts and food, and the mad rushes that accompany it, I can go back to concentrating mainly about the garden which is a pleasant thing!

One snag we had during the holidays (or should I say two) is that both of us caught a bug that made us both feel very ill in the past few days. Most likely it's the Flu virus that's doing the rounds here lately, but whatever it is, it is a nasty one and I've never felt so run down like that before. We're both on the mend now thankfully, but the effects are lingering on a bit, mainly tiredness and a feeling of exhaustion, but hopefully by the end of this week we're both feeling a 100% again.

So for the new year we decided to go on a quick visit to Kew Gardens, as well as check out the winter sales at the nearby Palm Centre.

View inside The Temperate House at Kew
Kew Gardens is reasonably near us and we both have a yearly pass, given to us as a traditional Christmas present from Gaz's parents, so we always make an effort to visit the place several times a year. It's both a source of learning and pleasure, inspiration and much needed green fix during the deepest depths of winter, courtesy of the numerous (and large) glasshouses to be found there, housing an impressive collection of exotic plants.

National Collection of Trachycarpus at The Palm Centre
Afterwards, we dropped by the Palm Centre to check out their winter plant sales. As the namesake indicates, it is a good source of hardy palms as well as a few other exotic plants. The sales were generally good, nothing too unusual as such but we went home with a couple of bargain palms, a decent sized Trachycarpus fortunei and a Rhapidophyllum hystrix. And with the latter being so slow growing, it was a good price for that size indeed.

So a couple of new plants for the new year, and that's just the start. More new goodies will be trickling in the next few months, all part and parcel of developing a garden.

A few more shots from Kew.



  1. Such a great place to visit! Seems like you guys had a lot of fun

  2. Were you there today? Because we were!

  3. Kew is high on my list of places to visit the next time we're in England. Thank you for sharing a photos from your trip. And I hope the two of you will be back to normal soon!

  4. Beautiful photos, though I hope you guys will be feeling better soon. I'm curious, have you tried radicalis palm or hardy bamboo palm yet?

  5. Fortunate that you live near such a fabulous garden! Get well soon, and have a happy New Year, filled with many good gardening days.

  6. This is the time of year when I most want a greenhouse! Your photos are making me crave at least a visit... I'll have to head over to a nearby botanical garden (though it won't be Kew...). Glad you're on the mend!

  7. Thanks for well wishes, much appreciated! Not quite fully shaken off the bug but nearly there :)

    Kew's a great place to visit indeed! Julia, shame we didn't bump into each other whilst there, will let you know next time we pop round again.

    Gerhard, it's a must to visit Kew when on holiday here. Hopefully it'll be soon, maybe even meet up if you get the chance to visit. Spring and summer are predictably the best times to visit.

  8. Thanks Steve! We have tried both C. microspadix and radicalis, with the latter doing better. They are both planted out for a few years now but we've been having rather harsh winters the past few years, with the C. microspadix going backwards but still alive, the C. radicalis remains static at least, the lowest temperature being -8C last winter.

    Debs, it is great that Kew is reasonably near us and we're able to visit several times a year :)

    Eliza, we would never be without our greenhouses, they are indispensable and handy. Do consider getting one, you won't regret it!

  9. Also, I should have included the link earlier for this month's issue of How to Find Great Plants. Thanks for participating!

  10. Hope both of you will getting better. Great place to visit, wish I can visit soon. Looks you really enjoy visit this place, I'm always wish to visit Kew Garden and feel the experience ;-)

  11. Kew has to be near the top of places I must visit. In the meantime I think I will head over to the duthie park Winter gardens, which is Kew on a small scale. Hope you guys are better soon and thanks for adding aberdeengardening to your blog list.

  12. I wish I had room for some big ferns. As for palms - I have two cordylines and they aren't even 'real' palm trees. The photo from the Temperate House can make one dream though.

    Thanks for the Blotanical pick.


  13. I love Kew. It's one of the places I miss from living in London, and the green houses at the Copenhagen Botanical Gardens ( are a poor - though still good! - substitute...

  14. Hi Soren, I'd still like to check it out next time we visit Copenhagen.

    You can still do a day trip to Kew from Copenhagen :)


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