NEW AND RARE PLANTS.
The common kinds of chrysanthemums have no resemblance whatever in their blossoms to the flowers of the honeysuckle, but a new single variety, . named honeysuckle, is almost a- facsimile of the popular and fragrant climber. The flowers are of the purest white, with a decided and effective yellow centre, and they last a long time. Its name is most appropriate, for, strange to say, the odour it. carries with it reminds one of the delightfully sweet-smelling honeysuckle. It is considered a charming variety, and will be a favourite with all where cut flowers are used.
Four new Lachenalias were recently figured in the ". Gardener's Chronicle/ They are all very beautiful novelties. L.' a urea is a rich apricot or goldenyellow colour. L. pendula aureliana has crimson flowers. The remaining two are hybrids raised by Mr F. . W. Moore, Glasnevin Gardens. These beautiful bulbs, sometimes called Cape cowslips, are easily hybridised, *and plants are readily raised from seed. Seed should be sown ac soon as ripe. It takes about three months to germinate j if kept in a warm house the seedlings remain green and continue to grow for eighteen months, or for two seasons. After this the. plants require very little fire-heat. From South Africa comes a rare sweet-scented annual plant which is likely to be in request when it is better known. Hebenstreitia 00-mcsa looks at a little distance something like a mignonette. On long slender spikes are innumerable curiously-form-ed small white flowers, with 'bright orange-scarlet blotches, and when ckiselv examined they are very interesting. The plant is half hardy, and grotvs to a height of 18in. A whiff of Heber.streitia perfume is delicious. On a warm sunny evening a nutty scent comes from these flowers. It se©ni6 like a
mingling of perfumes distilled from mignonette, rose and Virginian stock. One of the most remarkable plants recently introduced from tropical Africa is Crinum natans. It will not grow unless treated as a water lily, and then it develops numerous narrow, thin, wavy leaves from one to two yards in length. The scape is a foot high, and the flowers, which are in an. umbel, have slender, erect tubes 6in long, and drooping narrow segments 3in long, of pure white. A rery beautiful pure white and fragrant Crinum, named Rattrayii, has recently been exhibited in London, where it received a very high award. It # is eaid to be the finest of t all the tribe. * It is a native of the neighbourhood of Lake Albert, Africa. Moior Rattray, who introduced this novelty, reports that the natives- assert that when Mtesa wa*s King of Uganda this crinum was dedicated to his use and that of the Biehest chiefs, and heavy penalties were inflicted on others found in possession of the plant. Another new plant from South Africa iis^ named Mc6chosma riparium. It is a winter-flowering plant", with fiairy stems, cordate leaves, and exceedingly numerous small cream or white-colour-ed blo«=6ms.. The foliage of this novelty is fraerant, strongly reminiscent of satre, mingling with other herbs. It is expected to prove a first-rate garden plant. New magnolias are not seen every day. M. Kobns has pure white flowers, star-like in shape, and 6weetlv scented. It is a free bloomer, and will make a handsome tree. It is described as a very rapid-growing species. Plants at Veitch's are now from 12ft to 14ft high. They have been regularly transplanted, and were only brought from Jan an seven years ago. Frepsias are very popular springflowering bulbs. In America they are grown by the acre, and millions of bulbs of the common kind are sold annually. A new variety, named Purity, i« a irreat improvement on the _oW Leichtlini oV refracta. It is described as a magnificent, snowy, glistening white, of very large size, and nrreat length and strength of stem. Trusses bear from eight to ten buds, of which six are frequently open at the same time. Stems can be cut 2ft loner, and as rigid as sticks. It is very prolific in bloom.
The blue-flowered Indian shamrock (Paroch'setus oommunis) makes an elegant pot or basket plant, suitable either for the cool greenhouse, fernery or verandah. Its foliage is of a cheerful green hue, and dangles down in a graceful manner. The leaves arc not linHke those of some kinds of clover, being trifoliate with a dark zone, while the flowers, of a clear paje-blue colour, resemble those of the chickling veitch. It is found growing fringing the waterrills in both North China and India.
A new lobelia, named tenuior, is 6aid to be a most charming species, having cobalt-blue flowers, with a white centre, and nearly an in"h in diameter. The plant is of a light, and graceful habit, reaching to a height of lft, is a profuse bloomer throughout the summer months, and is specially adapted for pot and basket culture.
Primrcs©- Buttercup is stated to be the best thing sent out since Begonia Gloire de Lorraine. Of almost the exact colour of a buttercup, blooming most profusely, it will be much sought after for pot culture, as well as for the borders. The flowers are borne on spikes, and a^ plant: in a 6ih pot carries hundreds of blossoms, ranging to nearly an inch in diameter. It is an American novelty. It is easy to manage, and grows well from seed.
One of the handsomest of all the campanulas, and also entirely distinct from, the rest of the genus, is C. Vidallii. Twenty years ago this fine species of " Bellflower " from the Azores was not uncommon, _ but, > like many other good things, it is never seen nowada3 r s; probably it is quite lost ; if so, it should be reintroduced. It is of shrubby habit, forming a woody stem a foot in height, from which flower-spikes arise ' which are often 3ft high ; valuable for pot culture or the mixed border.
Ostrowskia magnifica is the name of a handsome, hardy plant, which may be included amongst the finest hardy perennials grown. It comes from Eastern Bokhara, and is closely allied botanically to the genus Campanula. A plant of this novelty has bloomed at Kew. It consisted of seven strong stems, 4ft to sft high, each bearing several blooms, nearly sin across. The flowers are of great beauty, being of a delicate purple, with darker veins. The leaves are both in whor,ls, and also opposite each 'other. Tho stems are pale green-, dotted with red-brown spot 6. It has large carrot-like roots, brittle, and 2ft to 3ft long.
The Princess of Wales variety is deemed by many to be the best violet we have, but in England a new kind, named Lady Clifford, has appeared, which is said to be a decided improvement upon the Princess. It flowers much more freely and is very early. It is of a distinct colour, has a purple shade and a more clearly denned eye. The flower is shapely, and borne on stiS stems, fully lOin long.
Any novelty in the way of _ -edible fruits should receive our attention. A climbing plant, having beautiful foliage, handsome and numerous flowers, and edible fruits, and growing freely in England, should be worth our trying in New Zealand. Actinidia chinensis was firet discovered .by Fortune, in China, and more recently by Maries, in Japan. It habit it is a climber, with dark green leaves, densely tomentose on the under surface, and in their young state densely covered with red hairs. The flowers are born© in clusters on dwarf shoots, are ljin across,' bright yellow iv colour, enclosing numerous stamens. The fruit, about the size and shape of a walnut, is covered with hairs ; in flavour, so far as can be judged from Chinese preserves, it resembles ripe gooseberries. If th ©''fruits are freely produced, and the plant thrives with us, as it is most likely to do, the Actinidia might prove an acquisition to our number of fruits. As regards colour the most remarkable primula yet seen is a species recently found in Western China. It is named Cockburniana. The leaves ot this fine novelty a/re oblong, finely, doubly, and sharply toothed. The flowers are produced in whorls one above another, and when first expanded are scarlet, but, later on, fade to an orange shade. It has just flowered for the first time, and has I'eceiv'ed a
botanical certificate of the' Royal Horticultural Society.
A valuable and beautiful novelty is
a white gentianella, (Gentiana acaulis alba). Those who know how charming a plant the ordinary blue gentianella is will be gratified to know that a white variety is now in existence. It is described as of the purest white, with a yellow suffusion inside the flower, which only intensifies the purity of the remainder. It.is an abundant bloomer, and was raised from seecP in the Darley Dale Nurseries, 'Matlock. A ,very much improved variety of the white everlasting pea is being distributed in England. The name of this novelty is-rLa-thy^as 'latifolins •grancjir florus albus.. Not only are the flowers much larger than those of the ordinary type, but a spray can be cut with a dozen or more expanded blossoms on a stem. It makes a good pot plant for early blooming, and is really a magnificent plant when grown under srlaes. A much-appreciated plant in England is Lathyrus pubescens, a new form of the perennial pea. Its flowers are of an exquisite pale maxive; colour, and these have a most delicate perfume. Like the common everlasting pea, it is an abundant bloomer. It is seen at its best in England when grown under glass, but it also flowers outside. It should be a most valuable plant for ue. i Zephyrine Druot is the name of an exquisite thornleas rose, which in England blooms from June to November. It may be used as a pillar or bush j is rich in colour, delicious'in perfume, and is literally a rose without a thorn. It is not quite a new variety, but has been recently reintroduced into England from the Continent.