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The little Japanese maple is Acer palmatum ‘Senkaki’ or sometimes called ‘Sango Kaku’. It becomes more golden as the autumn progresses and the new branches are a brilliant red, hence the common name ‘Coral Bark Maple’.

The hedge you can see behind the small pot looks dark and mysterious in the glowering light. It mainly consists of a gigantic ‘Banksia’ rose, the yellow one. This has swallowed several shrubs, including the Luculia, visible at the front, which still manages to flower profusely most winters. There are also viburnums, quince and mock orange under there. They poke helpless branches through now and then in a feeble plea for light and space. There is another rose tangled up with it on the other side, a dark red spring flowering one, which I have not yet identified.

The rose hedge is a loose, unclipped one of course; it’s far too big too trim, you would need a cherry picker. A Sleeping Beauty might hide in a bower within.

Bower is such a great word.

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