Gardening Magazine

A Touch of the Orient

By Ozhene @papaver
"A garden is a grand teacher. It teaches patience and careful watchfulness; it teaches industry and thrift; above all it teaches entire trust." (Gertrude Jekyll)
Some of you will recognize this as a favorite quotation of mine.  I do believe that it is true, though there are some who would look at it and say that I am not a patient person.  In truth I am not always patient, in regards to some things I am very impatient, but when it comes to my garden I have found remarkable patience, almost to an unbelievable extent.
I give you exhibit (a)
A touch of the orient Now it is fair to say that I do like poppies.  I like many different types of poppies and it is hard for me to actually choose a favorite type.  They all have their reasons to be the best sort there is, so I refuse to choose an all time number 1.  In the top ten, however, there will always be the Papaver Orientale.
A touch of the orient They are big, they are everything on a large scale.  They are clearly a type of poppy they have all the resemblances that the family has, but just that little bit more.  They also have the joy of being perennial so they come back, year on year, looking the same but a bit bulkier than the year before.
A touch of the orient and they unfurl beautifully.  Suddenly the buds are there and slowly, slowly they start to open, looking like they will suddenly pop.
A touch of the orient Which they do, they pop into what can only be described as a handful of crumpled silk.  Its like a clean hanky you have just scrunched up and you are allowing to unfurl.
A touch of the orient A touch of the orient A touch of the orient Yes oriental poppies are special.
Hang on a minute I hear you say, what has this to do with patience?  Well I have said that it can take a few days for the flowers to open and actually at that point I am fairly impatient, I want to see its majesty.
No, this specific plant is patience personified as it was grown from a root cutting taken in 2011 whilst at a propagation workshop at Swines Meadow Farm Nursery.  I have nurtured this root cutting and it has now delivered this beautiful poppy.  It has the dual qualities of being beautiful and a plant that was propagated by me.  What is not to love?

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