Monday, April 16, 2012

Prunus 'Pink Perfection'

Prunus 'Pink Perfection', photos taken on 14th April when it was just beginning to come into flower.

This is a variety that becomes lovelier the closer you get to it.

It's a cross between Prunus 'Kanzan' and Prunus 'Shimidsu' (aka 'Shôgetsu'). 'Kanzan' is hot pink and 'Shimidsu' is ice-white: 'Pink Perfection' is, obviously, closer to 'Kanzan' in this respect, just a little more subtle.

In other respects it is closer to 'Shimidsu': the relatively small stature, the fine leaves (opening greener than 'Kanzan') and the pendent flowers on long stalks; all very unlike the exploding-pompom effect of 'Kanzan', where the flowers open in all directions from deep-red orange leaves.

This is all very easy to see in those occasional years when Kanzan and PP come into flower at almost the same time (as in 2016).

At this early stage the impression is that it's delicate, dainty and relatively muted compared to its more common relative. But when PP comes more fully into flower it is, as someone said, the most voluptuous of all the cherries, with an ever-fascinating variety of shades of pink and white. Why this extraordinary latecomer never arose in Japan, or at least was never noticed there, is a mystery to me. (Though I imagine that both parents are highly infertile.)

PP still isn't grown nearly enough though. Relatively small as it is, it's still too big for today's pocket-handkerchief front gardens, where people now buy dwarf cherries. In Glastonbury it's planted in numbers by the main through road and it looks fantastic.

This scene-stealing creature got into the shot by accident, but hey.

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