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Can someone please help me identify these?

Greg10Greg10 Posts: 8

Hello all,

Just joined the site and looking forward to getting some help with my new garden.

I am a total novice and I have moved to a new house with a substantial mature garden with lots of different plants and trees. Can someone please help me identify the below? I have just started to prune it, taking off the dead heads as you can see in the pictures.

Thanks in advance











  • Hello Greg10 and welcome to the site! Lucky you to be starting out on a new big garden, though I expect it feels a bit daunting at present...

    Your plants--the top two show Hydrangea macrophylla in a lacecap variety. You can take the dead heads off now though the usual advice in books is to wait until mid-April to protect the flower buds which form and are sheltered from late frosts by the old flowers.

    The bottom one is also of a Hydrangea, almost certainly a variety of the species H. macrophylla, although as the flower heads are all gone I can't tell whether it is a lacecap or a mophead.

    You have some dark purple/green leaves trailing through the shrub in the top photos and this is a self-seeded bramble which you'll need to dig out, roots and all (don't worry about disturbing the hydrangea roots, if you can't get at it otherwise you can dig the whole shrub up with a large rootball, get out the bramble root (otherwise they come back and become harder to manage) and then replant your hydrangea with a bit of pelleted timed-release fertiliser and some good compost.

    Hope this isn't TMI! 

  • Greg10Greg10 Posts: 8

    That's great, thank you so much for the advice. Yes, the brambles are a problem and are frequent visitors around the entire garden. It's hard to know where to start with it all. I've taken all the dead heads off this now, but will remember the advice for next year to remove them in April.

    Whilst I was outside, I took pictures of the other plants/trees that make up the rest of the row, any help in identifying would be great....











  • nutcutletnutcutlet Posts: 27,350

    The top 2 are mahonias, the next a skimmia, next probably a spiraea but can't see it clearly

    I don't recognise the last one but it looks a bit too yellow for health

    In the sticks near Peterborough
  • BiljeBilje Posts: 770
    The top two photos are Mahonia, third is a Skimmia, the Fourth it's difficult to judge the size and the last could be a pieris or a rhododendron I'm sure someone more knowledgeable will confirm, or not of course!
  • BiljeBilje Posts: 770
    We crossed Nut, thanks for jogging my memory re the spirea, it looked like my Golden Princess but I couldn't remember the Spirea bit.
  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Posts: 86,877


    1. Mahonia
    2. ditto
    3. Skimmia
    4. a rather hungry looking rhododendron (those brown buds will be flowers before too long).

    Gardening in Central Norfolk on improved gritty moraine over chalk ... free-draining.

  • Hi Greg10, welcome to the site.

    The first is a very healthy Mahonia, probably a variety of x intermedia which make large but lovely winter-flowering plants; at a pinch I'd think 'Winter Sun'?

    The second is a slightly hungry Skimmia japonica, probably 'Rubella', which could use a fertilise with timed release ericaceous fertiliser

    The third is a Spiraea japonica 'Goldflame' that would benefit from having a third of the oldest stems cut out

    The last is hard to recognise and I hesitate between a very unhappy rhododendron and an aucuba, but am inclined to say it's a rhodo which, again, desperately needs ericaceous fertiliser. (If it is an aucuba it won't hurt it.) You could check--the difference will be in the buds which in a rhodo will be russet brown in the centres of the leaf spirals a tiny bit like a pine cone: here's a pic

    Though I must say that if I had your soil I would be inclined to ditch the rhodo and put something less particular as to pH in its place. Have you tested your soil? You can get a cheap kit from garden centres. 

  • nutcutletnutcutlet Posts: 27,350

    I think rhodo rather than aucuba on the last, it looks more sick than variegated

    In the sticks near Peterborough
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