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Pretty perennials in the spring garden

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  • Pretty perennials in the spring garden

    The garden is starting to flower, Perennial pink strawberries at the edge of the path, Autumn Olive (small tree producing red berries in September/October) is in full flower and the air is filled with their fine perfume, lastly the flowering Japanese Quince. The strawberries do not produce as much as their white flowered cousins, The autumn olive produces berries a bit like red currants, but with golden dots all over them. The quince is not the same as a quince tree (distant relatives), although the small fruit can be used for jellies just the same.
    Last edited by Galina; 13-05-2015, 17:00.

  • #2
    Gorgeous!

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    • Galina
      Galina commented
      Editing a comment
      Thank you kindly

  • #3
    Those strawberry flowers look so pretty. My Japanese quince (only small plants) flowered quite early this year and have all but finished, love the mass of blooms you have
    Picture 2 looks different, lovely delicate flowers what variety is it?

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    • #4
      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Elaeagnus_umbellata

      Autumn Olive aka Eleagnus Umbellata, no further variety name. I got the seeds many years ago from Future Foods (long gone but was run by a guy who used to run the Heritage Seed Library) and mine look just like the Wikipedia pictures.
      Last edited by Galina; 30-04-2015, 11:03.

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      • #5
        Lol, I read the labels wrongly, I was thinking it looked unusual for a quince! Funny though I was thinking it was familiar, I've got one too and it's been smothered in flowers, so lovely and yes the smell is something special. No fruits set though?

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        • Galina
          Galina commented
          Editing a comment
          No the labels almost always go wrong. If you hover over an unopened picture, the right caption appears.

          Autumn Olive Here took a few years to set fruit (5 from seed to first fruit from memory , but have done so reliably every year. The fruits take a long time to develop considering how early the plants flower.

        • jayb
          jayb commented
          Editing a comment
          Good to know and something to look forward to. My one is still quite a small plant, I'll have another look but I'm pretty sure all the flowers dropped without setting. But hopefully next year.

      • #6
        Autumn Olive in late September. Use like red currants. Makes great jelly. I also add them to preserved pears in kilner jars. Not only does it look pretty (they keep their colour, red currants do not), the contrast in flavour is delightful.

        Hope you get some fruit later this year.

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        • jayb
          jayb commented
          Editing a comment
          Mmm, looks scrummy!

      • #7
        Better picture of the Autumn Olive in flower.

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        • #8
          Oh it's lovely, mine is just a baby in comparison. Fingers crossed for next year!

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          • Galina
            Galina commented
            Editing a comment
            Just a thought - do they need another bush for pollination? Just wondering because you said none of your flowers have set. I have what looks like one large bush, but it is actually 3 that are grown very closely together. I think I spaced them a foot apart thinking 'bush' and then they grew into a small, bushy tree in no time at all.

            I could give you plenty of seeds for growing more Jayb. I started with seeds that needed cold stratifying and it worked out fine. The only problem I have is learning how to extract the seeds from the fruit (short of sucking them out with my mouth, which isn't exactly nice for the recipient!). Would crushing the fruits lightly to break the skin and fermenting work? I have been planning to add these to the seed circle, but every year I am not sure how to actually get seeds. Any comments appreciated.

          • Galina
            Galina commented
            Editing a comment
            Well in the end, I placed the fruits onto a microfibre cleaning cloth and folded, rolled and squeezed. First that squeezing action broke the skin, then the rolling action pushed most of the flesh off the seeds. A wash of the seeds in a sieve (and the cloth got washed too), then another roll inside the cloth. Another wash and they looked pretty clean. Then I just spread them out and let them dry. Sometimes you sort of have to learn on the job and make up your own instruction how to save seeds of stuff!

        • #9
          Good tips, I've sown my Autumn Olive's thanks, just a waiting game now

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          • #10
            Long wait - I have a few seeds in plastic food containers in the back of the fridge at the moment too cold stratifying away too. All dated with a label when they can come out of the fridge, then they will go in the conservatory and hopefully germinate. Yes it is a bit of an anxious waiting game. Hope they will do fine for you. I could try and root a cutting for you? The leaves are just coming out, this is a time when cuttings usually take well, because plants really want to grow.

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            • #11
              Thank you for your lovely offer, but I think it would be difficult to post and I do have a small plant I'm hoping will be ok in the end. I'll persevere and hope for the best.

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              • Galina
                Galina commented
                Editing a comment
                Fingers crossed for both of us

            • #12
              How long do the Autumn Olive seeds need to be stratified for? Mine have been in the fridge since I got the seed parcel...

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              • Galina
                Galina commented
                Editing a comment
                3 months is what my original bumf said and that worked here. A simulated winter long.

              • Silverleaf
                Silverleaf commented
                Editing a comment
                Thanks! I'm in no desperate rush to sow them, was just wondering.

              • jayb
                jayb commented
                Editing a comment
                A long wait then!
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