Modified Delphiniums

Collected Items 26.08.12

Since relocating from Auckland to London, my very large appetite for garden design in all its forms has been sated many times over.  From the grand topiary at Hampton Court to the fussy floral displays at the Chelsea Flower Show to the brambles on Hampstead Heath, I have had my eyes opened to a plethora of gardens and garden aesthetics.  That being said, it is always with delight that I stumble upon some new resource of garden related knowledge. One such wellspring, found by Elizabeth, is this blog. It is brimming with delightful tidbits, like the fact that Edward Steichen (the photographer) was obsessed with Delphiniums, the quote following outlining his predilection for genetic modification(!):

It is now also considered the first intersection between genetic modification and art:   Steichen applied colcichine, a chemical mutagen that induces chromosome doubling, to his delphiniums.  The normal delphinium of the day was three to four feet tall; Steichen’s could be seven, as seen below in the white behemoth he named for his brother in-law the poet Carl Sandburg. His most popular variety, the Connecticut Yankee, was named as an homage to Mark Twain and is still commercially available.

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