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'Princess Diana'

A relatively recent introduction from the Barry Fretwell stable, this plant caused a bit of a stir when it was first shown in public and rightly so. The plant bears the most irredescant (5-6 cm long) pink flowers with a deep pink bar on the inside of the sepals and they also have a contrasting white margin. The inner stamens are a creamy yellow while the anthers are a brown or maroon colour.
These upward facing tulip shaped flowers were created by crossing the hybrid 'Bees Jubilee' with the species C. texensis.
The abundance of flowers (once established) are produced between the months of June and September (although I have seen them out in May).
The plant reaches a height of about 8' (240 cm) and is semi-herbaceous in habit although any climbing nature woud be classed as marginal more of an occasional half hearted attempt. Although this plant is classed as a group 3 pruning (hard prune) my plant produces so much early growth that I tend to prune down to the first pair of growing buds and not down to the ground (I may go a bit lower just to keep the height in check). This seems to make the plant flower earlier than any other of the C. texensis hybrids. As the flowers age the sepals widen slightly to reveal gaps (see close up view of anthers).
This plant seems to thrive well in a semi shaded position although any position would not cause it too much distress and thankfully it has not inherited the problem of mildew from its C. texensis parent.
Although people may buy this plant just because of the name as far as I am concerned it could have been called C. texensis 'Don't Buy Me' (now there's a novelty) and I would still have bought it, a truly must have plant for any garden.

Flower Colour
Bright pink with white margins
Pruning Group
Group 3
Zone 4
6-8' or 180-240 cm
Flowering Season
June to September
Any aspect
Other info
Originally sold under the name 'The Princess of Wales'

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