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Kirengeshoma palmata - landscaping-gardening

 

Kirengeshoma palmata

Sometimes known as fair-haired waxbells, Kirengeshoma palmata is a late-flowering rhizomatous continuing up to 1. 2m high with arching stems and is native to the woods and mountain lowlands of Korea and the Japanese islands of Shikoku and Kyushu.

The bizarre name? No, it doesn't come from an cloak Danish botanist called Kirengeshom. It's certainly just a Latinised adaptation of the fundamental Japanese name. Palmata, a customary definite epithet, means shaped like a hand and refers to the foliage.

Formerly classified in its own family, it is now a affiliate of the hydrangea family, while its flowers, which are about 3cm long, are more reminiscent of those of a single-flowered Japanese anemone. The vegetation of most of the plants seen in gardens are a equitably deep yellow, all the same the colour of wild specimens ranges from white to apricot. While attractive and graceful, the fleshy-petalled flowers, which are borne in sprays on wiry stems that bend under their own weight, never certainly open fully. The buds start to burst in early autumn.

While the flora can be a bit of a disappointment, it isn't too great a burden that they don't open fully as this is a plant grown as much for its plant life as its flowers. The grass are up to 20cm long and wide with critical lobes that are deeper on the basal plants and very shallow on the abridged grass found on the flower stems.

The commonly established attitude is that it the only species in its genus, but some botanists choose to classify the Korean plants alone as Kirengeshoma koreana. As far as gardeners are afraid any differences among the plants are very minor, despite the fact that there is some air that the Korean plants may in the end be bigger than their Japanese cousins and that their plant life open more fully.

As you would expect, making an allowance for its origins, Kirengeshoma palmata prefers a moist, leafy, humus-rich soil in incomplete shade. In other words, archetypal wood conditions. In late autumn it dies back to its rootstock, which is enormously hardy and quite able of withstanding -15°C. It is propagated each by apportionment in chill or early spring, or by raising from seed. The seed prefers cool temperatures, about 12 to 15°C and the germination time is variable, someplace from 30to 300 days. I've found that sowing fresh seed in the autumn and leave-taking the seed tray in a shady place for germination in the next bounce satisfies any stratification rations and gives good results.

Kirengeshoma palmata is an ideal companion for any Japanese or Chinese wood plants and looks magnificent under maples, the leaf shape of which it complements perfectly. Since it needs ample summer damp it thrives at the edges of a bog backyard with candelabra primroses, Rodgersia and irises. Its late blossoming habit is invaluable in on condition that activity at a time of year when other forest plants may be befitting considerably dull.

So why isn't it far more common? I have agreed no idea.

I am a patch book cause and horticultural photographer based in Christchurch, New Zealand. I run a stock photo documents called Country, Farm and Plot (http://www. cfgphoto. com). This critique may be re-published provided this in rank is available with it and is openly visible.


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