We all know flowers are beautiful. But not many of us know that they are rare too! Gems, which are precious, hard to find and thus, all the way more gorgeous! Not only the botanists from all over the world are enamored by them, but also everybody else, who isn’t bound to know more about flowers due to mere professional reasons!
ArenaFlowers brings you a series of rarest flowers and the most beautiful flowers in the world under The Blooming Beauties! Here we are covering Middlemist’s red camellia that came from China, but now has its lovely abode in New Zealand and London. The most noticeable thing about this flower is that quite contrary to its name & meaning, these flowers are deep pink in color, and not red. To most, it might look like a rose in deep pink color.
While it was imported from China as a luxury item about two hundred years ago, it has been wiped out from its native country.
Origin of Middlemist Red Camellia: The Story
The credit to bring this beautiful flower to Chiswick, West London goes to John Middlemist and this is how, it got its now popular name. The flower was collected by him in the year 1804 and handed over to Kew Gardens. Though, it disappeared from there, but a bud was spotted in the camellia section after a few years. This was later added to the sprawling Palladian villa, Chiswik House by the sixth Duke of Devonshire to this equally plush conservatory.
Though with time, the conservatory couldn’t cope up with its past glory and lost itself to the neglect. There was a lunatic asylum too and in fact, a bomb was planted there, but thankfully, it failed to explode and the conservatory was saved from total destruction. With the help of local volunteers and their just in-time rescue plans, camellia and the conservatory were restored. But it took botanists over 10 years to identify the flower’s species, while a few, about 7 are yet to be identified. And, it made up for the one of the greatest if not the most wonderful historic camellia collections.
The conservatory is home to 36 rarest camellia flowers, in total. As per the record, it took about three years to just identify the Middlemist camellia from historical bibliography and paintings. And it was only in the year 1999, when the researchers finally had success in spotting and identifying it. May be this is why, only one specimen has been identified in New Zealand until now.
As of now, the Gardens Trust, English Heritage and Chiswick House have come forward for the restoration of worth £12.1m of camellia collection.
If you are nearby, have a look as the garden reopens in June. But if you want to experience the bloom or the most spectacular display of our times, it won’t happen until next spring. The Chiswick Middlemist camellia blooms under glass and controlled conditions in the month of January and February. The harsh winter can delay the blooming by a month or two, but it cannot deter or beat it from making its mark!
Surviving the twists and turns of history, climates of different continents and even bombings, these Meaningful rarest camellias can definitely serve as vivid lesson for human race.