Winner on points Posted on June 1, 2007

I’m fickle enough to have a Plant of the Day, let alone Week or Month. But sometimes there is a plant of the season; not necessarily a big impact flower, just something that goes on appealing, and keeps getting talked about, for week after week.

This spring it has been Ribes speciosum, the Californian fuchsia gooseberry – an unlikely link, you may say, but one blessed by botany: R. fuchsioides was its former name. It has been growing slowly at Saling for many years; long enough to cover a ten-foot wall with a dozen

prickly stems, layers of deep glossy little green leaves on red stalks and for three months from March to May its bizarre rich scarlet flowers, an inch long with protruding stamens for all the world like fuchsias. This year it also protected the

only wisteria buds the chaffinches missed.

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