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As I said in my post  on My Garden earlier this week I like big foliage.  There is already some examples in the garden such as the Fatsia above which looks wonderful when the sun is thrown the leaves.

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The Acanthus mollis also looks great despite the time of year despite the odd hole but as I said I want to add to these with what we shall term ‘hardy exotics’.

My interest in good foliage is apparent when you look at the photographs I took at the Birmingham Botanic Garden this weekend. I was particularly keen on the plants in the Tropical Glasshouse but of course these would not grow in my garden and my greenhouse  would only accommodate one specimen.  I do wonder though whether I could grow Cycas revoluta (Sago Cycad) which was in the Sub-tropical glasshouse, maybe its a plant I could have outside and overwinter under cover.

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I adore this foliage it is so inviting and makes you want to stroke it.

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Then there was this wonderful Pelargonium Wantirna foliage.  The flowers were rather insignificant compared to the leaves.  This is definitely on my ‘wants list’.

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However I did spot a few new to me plants with great foliage outside that I can add to the garden, including Euphorbia robbiae, although I need to research this plant as I understand it can be quite invasive.

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For my fern collection I fancy the addition of Blechnaceae Blechnum chilense – a very stately and grand looking fern I think you will agree.

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Finally, I spotted the plant above which looks like a cross between and ivy and Fatsia.  Its Araliaceae x fatshedera lizei ‘Variegated’. Another one to put on the wants list for the hardy exotic border.

Once you start looking beyond the colourful flowers you soon discover that there is a wonderful variety of leaves and of course they last so much longer than the flower, in some cases all year round – whats not to like.

For more Foliage Follow-up posts visit Pam’s blog, Digging