2013—Day 298—Mystery

I have one camellia left in my garden and it came with the house when we moved here in 1991. When I took over its care, it still had its nursery tag attached; it is called “High Hat,” a pale pink peony form camellia. It was a pathetic, scraggly shrub with just a few yellowing leaves and I was determined to save it. I nurtured it and it became a lovely specimen that was covered with gorgeous pale pink blossoms every year from October through March, providing much needed fall and winter color in my garden. The mystery began several years ago when one of the flowers that emerged was red with white spots. I discoverd that “High Hat” is a sport of “Daikagura,” another peony form camellia but with red and white spotted petals and I presume that one or more branches reverted to the original form. I featured one of these flowers in my blog almost three years ago. Then, for several years after that, the shrub was covered with two kinds of flowers: some pale pink and some red and white. Last year, however, due to my complete neglect of the garden, not a single flower emerged. So, when I noticed lots of buds on the plant a couple of weeks ago, I was thrilled. A couple of days ago, I noticed one had opened and it was a Daikagura flower. Today, however, I noticed another flower had opened and the mystery deepens. The new blossom is solid pink, but a deep rose pink, not as red as the Daikagura and much darker and more intense than the delicate pale pink of the High Hat bloom. It looks as if I will have three different flowers this year; already starting to open are a couple of delicate pale pink blossoms and a couple of Daikaguras. This is the only deep solid rose flower. Time will tell if there are more hiding among the branches. If more open, I’ll have to feature a trio of blossoms in a future blog entry.

Day 298-31

D7100
50mm lens
ISO 100
f/16
5 seconds