Friday, April 02, 2021

Prunus 'Umineko'


Prunus 'Umineko'. Frome, 3 April 2021.

This is Prunus 'Umineko' - the combination of single white flowers, red bud scales and calyx, and emerging fresh green leaves, is highly distinctive. So is the egg-shape of the crown, with all those ascending branches springing from near the base of the tree.  These are photos of several trees round the edge of the Homebase car-park.

P. 'Umineko'  is a natural cross, inadvertently raised by Collingwood Ingram in the 1920s, between two Japanese species P. incisa (Fuji Cherry) x P. speciosa (Oshima Cherry). 

Prunus 'Umineko' was "rare" when Alan Mitchell wrote Trees of Britain, but is now a common planting. Another cross of the same two species arose later in Holland and is known as 'Snow Goose'.

Collingwood gave it the Japanese name 'Umineko', which is often incorrectly said to mean sea-eagle. It is actually the Japanese name for the Black-tailed Gull (Larus crassirostris) of E. Asia, and it literally means "sea cat", referring to the cat-like call.   Collingwood envisaged the blossom as a flock of gulls. 

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Prunus 'Umineko'. Frome, 3 April 2021.



[The long deep-red calyces resemble the parent Prunus incisa (Fuji Cherry); compare them with those on the popular garden miniature Prunus incisa 'Kojo-no-mai'.]


Prunus 'Umineko'. Frome, 3 April 2021.



Prunus 'Umineko'. Frome, 3 April 2021.





Prunus 'Umineko'. Frome, 3 April 2021.




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A young Prunus 'Umineko'. Frome, 1 April 2021.

A young plant, labelled "Prunus Umirako", a name unknown to the internet, so I'll put that down as a mishearing.

A young Prunus 'Umineko'. Frome, 1 April 2021.


A young Prunus 'Umineko'. Frome, 1 April 2021.


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