Over the past few weeks I've been tracking the progress of our spiky plant, ever since I noticed it was preparing to flower. It's only flowered once before so we're pleased it's trying again. The plant itself has its own special history, which is part of the reason why it's good to see it thriving.
About fifteen years ago I lived in a different part of South London, very close to Crystal Palace's ground and had a massive (and I mean massive) money plant on my open porch. The plant was easily 5ft tall, in a large pot so as you can imagine not especially easy to move. That plant I inherited from the old lady next door who passed on and her family had no use for. Moving it up her path and down my path was a feat in itself. One night when I got home from work many months later I was surprised to see it gone. I didn't immediately clock that it had gone, but it was only as I approached my kitchen I recognised what was missing! After some hunting around, checking with neighbours and reporting it to the Police (yes, that was a strange conversation to have!) there was nothing else for it but to recognise that it was gone. Then of course the porch looked empty and bereft. Nothing would replace it...
During the hunt that took place, we found a couple of these spiky plants which had just been thrown out onto waste land near the back of my house. My dad rescued two, potted them up and we had one each. His remained in Whitehorse Lane when they moved to Norfolk years later, mine moved with me when I came to 139a, it continued to flourish and we planted it out into the garden rather than having it as a potted plant. It's quite a vicious plant and often pricks you as you go past it and regularly 'spears' leaves as they fall from the trees. We also moved it as it used to 'guard' the gaps between the two old sheds (it's spiky-ness helping to ease my mind that foxes wouldn't dig where two of my beloved cats were buried), when the shed layout chage we moved it to replace a struggling Ceonanthus.
In its new position it's flourished. It's planted beneath a Forsythia but it doesn't seem to care. It first flowered when it was planted here (though not immediately) so by flowering again it's clearly happy!
14 July: the flowers are starting to come out
19 July: in full bloom
And the jasmine is starting to flower too:
Am loving that the jasmine flowers are in a line!