Friday, December 08, 2006

Tough love

The Brugmansia has done really well this year producing wave after wave of 10” long fluted and delicate blooms which are often 4” wide. It is in a bed on the south side of the house and has limited protection from the wind on the northern side but is exposed on all other fronts. The boughs of the Brugmansia have thickened up and it looks like a substantial shrub. I know a method of striking cuttings from this plant but as I will not be around all winter I think that’s a task best suited to the springtime.

This being an El Nino year we could be in for a rough and long winter and there could be casualties in the garden. This plant is getting towards the stage of being too big to move around easily so I have decided to leave it in situ over the winter. Brugmansia do shed their leaves and there should be just enough moisture in the soil to keep it ticking over. I have resisted the temptation to shorten the branching stems as I expect there to be some die back due to the cold. Come springtime I will cut the stems back to remove any die back and this should also encourage the plant to form a nicer shape. I think six to seven feet would be the best height for this specimen; allowing us to view the flowers at a reasonable level whilst the plant adds a bit more structure to the flower bed.


  1. Such a lovely plant, Colin, and I'll be interested in how you do your cuttings in the Spring. We lost ours in the cold winter of 2004.

    We had a 12 ft one in Portugal which was always covered in bees, the humming filled the air at sun-up. And the smell was heavenly.

  2. I know I am taking a chance Pam but the success of the over wintered Cannas has prompted me to have a go.

  3. Colin. Have just been given some seeds and on the net they're calling them datura. The seeds look like horse chestnuts, unlike the Brugmansia which has a pod. So we'll have a go and see what emerges.