On Friday evening, this is how Stevie and I inspected the trees, accompanied by evening sun, a glass of wine each, and the smell of the barbecue. It was the perfect end to a perfect day
The amelanchier blossom has been fluttering like confetti all over the rose garden, and this is what the tree looks like now:
The ephemeral nature of blossom is perhaps why we love it so much. This blossom lasted perhaps for two weeks, never looking the same from one day to the next.
The peach too is over, but we are hoping for a good set. Some years we get lots of peaches, others just three or four peaches. They are woolly in texture to eat, but make the most luscious jam. Well, Stevie makes the most luscious jam.
I am having my doubts that our crab-apple is Malus ‘Royalty’. Certainly in this picture the blossom looks too burgundy-red, with not enough pink in it, but it was taken in the evening light.
Either way, I like the sobriety of this tree. There is plenty of froth and fizz to come from the apple (drumroll):
Ok, so the apple is taking its time, but it will probably last the longest: three or four weeks is typical. But the pear has graced us with its presence:
The pear is perhaps my favourite blossom, being pure white with those dramatic black anthers.
There is only one tree which beats the profusion of pear, and that is the cherry:
That picture doesn’t really do it justice. The whole tree is a fluffy cloud of white.
But the most beautiful buds prize this week goes to that ugly duckling, the walnut. Just look at it now:
There is such sculpted elegance in those leaves. They have just a touch of apricot-bronze. And the silvery shimmer! Look at it from this angle:
The pineappley things turn out to be blossom buds, but I think the leaves are the real stars.
Biding its time, because it wants to beat the apple next week, is my mystery bud. This is a bit embarrassing, but fantastic at the same time. I asked readers if anyone knew what the tiny little red buds were, and I got back the answer Circis siliquastrum, or ‘Judas tree’ (or ‘redbud’). Surely not, I thought, for I have admired pictures of the Judas tree in my Carol Klein book, Life in a Cottage Garden, and have considered garden visits based purely on their famed Judas trees.
But, yes, it does appear that these buds match exactly the photos online. Here they are now, the buds having popped just a little:
Looking particularly lovely against a blue sky.
And close up, like little jelly beans:
So how is it possible that I have failed to notice that we have our very own Judas tree in our front garden? Has it been frosted before? Have I just been distracted at this time of year by the tulips? Or by the other divine tree behind it which has dripping blackcurrant laburnum-like flowers? I shall be posting a picture for identification soon – it is late this year.
But no matter, I am delighted to be the proud owner of this fantabulous tree. And I will take a photo when it bursts. And I forgive the previous owners of the garden for that bamboo, and for the wretched Spanish bluebells, because you gave us the gift of a Judas tree. Thank you.
Have you ever been surprised to find you already own a lusted-after specimen? Or is it just me? Have you had the (more common) experience of planting one thing and then discovering it is actually another?