Colin Mills, compiler of the Hortus Camdenensis, died in late November 2012 after a short illness. As he always considered the Hortus his legacy, it is his family's intention to keep the site running in perpetuity. It will not, however, be updated in the near future.

Plants in the Hortus

Many of the plants described here were listed in the catalogues of plants published by Sir William Macarthur in 1843, 1845, 1850 and 1857 and in an unpublished catalogue dated 1861. A large number of additional plants were identified from correspondence, gardening notebooks and other documents surviving in the archives. The Hortus attempts to describe all the plants grown in the gardens at Camden Park and those grown in horticultural enterprises such as orchards and vineyards and includes plants grown outside the gardens in the park-like environs of the Camden Park estate. The Hortus plants served a wide range of purposes in the 19th century household; as ornament, living fences, fibre, dyestuffs, medicines, food and drink from the garden, orchard and vineyard and many others.

Yucca aloifolia L. var. draconis (L.) Engelm.

For details of the species see Yucca aloifolia L.  The variety draconis has a branched trunk and drooping leaves.  It may be synonymous with Yucca aloifolia pendula listed by Paxton's and Johnson's Dictionary.  [RHSD, Hortus]. 


Yucca bowieana [Macarthur]

Unidentified Yucca or related species. I have found no reference to a plant of this name.

It is possibly an error with Aloe bowieana intended, although it seems unlikely that Macarthur would mistake a plant from the Americas with one from South Africa. See Notes.


Yucca filamentosa L.

Fully-hardy, clump-forming shrub, stemless or nearly so, with basal rosettes of rigid, inversely lance-shaped leaves, margined with curly white threads, and long upright panicles of nodding, bell-shaped white flowers, tinged cream or green, in summer.  To 75cm, flowers to 1.5m.  [RHSE, Hortus]. 


Yucca flaccida Haw. var. glaucescens Trel.

Stemless or short-stemmed yucca with narrow, pointed, green or glaucous leaves, to 90cm, bent down at the end and with the leaf margins furnished with threads, usually straighter than Yucca filamentosa.  The flowers are yellowish white in erect, downy panicles.  [RHSD, Hortus]. 


Yucca glauca Nutt.

Stemless or short-stemmed yucca with a horizontal rosette, to 1.2m across of narrow, pointed, glaucous leaves.  The flowers are greenish-white, pendulous, in an erect raceme to 1.5 m high.  [RHSD, Hortus]. 


Yucca gloriosa L.

Frost-hardy, erect shrub with a stout stem, branching at the top, bearing terminal tufts of narrowly lance-shaped, stiffly-pointed, arching leaves, and, in summer to autumn, long, upright panicles of pendant, bell-shaped, sometimes purple-tinged, white flowers.  To 2m.  [RHSE, Hortus]. 


Zantedeschia aethiopica (L.) Spreng.

Half-hardy, evergreen clump-forming, rhizomatous perennial with glossy, arrow shaped leaves and a succession of pure white flowers in summer.  The flowers are actually very small, surrounded by a large, showy, pure white spathe.  To 1.2m.  [RHSE, CECB, Hortus]. 

Zephyranthes atamasco (L.) Herb.

A bulbous perennial, the basal leaves are semi-erect and strap-shaped, the scentless funnel-shaped white flowers, sometimes flushed with purple, appearing in spring or summer.  To 30cm.  [RHS, Hortus, Baker Am.].  

Zephyranthes candida (Lindl.) Herb.

A hardy evergreen bulbous perennial with narrow, sword-shaped foliage and white, crocus-like flowers in autumn.  [RHSD, Hortus].  Sometimes mistaken for Zephyranthes atamasco [Hortus].

Zephyranthes drummondii D.Don

Bulbous perennial usually with about 7 linear, twisted, prostrate leaves to the bulb, and flowering stems, to 20cm long, with fragrant white flowers, tinged red outside, opening at night in summer.  To 25cm.  [RHSD, Hortus, Baker Am.].  

Zephyranthes lindleyana Herb.

Bulbous perennial with narrow, linear leaves, to 50cm long, produced with the solitary, crocus-like, rose-coloured flowers, to 5cm long, in spring.  [RHSD, Baker Am.].  

Zephyranthes minuta (Kunth) D.Dietr.

It is possible that the plant listed in the catalogues as Zephyranthes rosea is Zephyranthes minuta (Kunth) D.Dietr., synonym Zephyranthes rosea Hort. This plant was known commonly in the nursery trade as Zephyranthes grandiflora (another synonym) from the early to mid 19th century and was often confused with Zephyranthes rosea Lindl. in the trade [Hortus]. It is a bulbous perennial with narrowly strap-shaped leaves, erect and spreading, and rose pink flowers.  It has longer, brighter pink flowers than the true Z. rosea.  [RHSD, Hortus].

Zephyranthes rosea Lindl.

Bulbous perennial, the semi-erect, narrowly linear, basal leaves being produced with the short-tubed, funnel-shaped pink flowers in autumn.  To 20cm.  [RHSE, Hortus, Baker Am.].  

Zinnia elegans Jacq.

Frost tender, upright, bushy annual with lightly hairy, lance-shaped leaves and daisy-like, broad-petalled purple flower heads in summer.  Many colour forms are available.  Most garden forms are derived from Zinnia elegans and Z. haageana Reg.  To 75cm, taller in some varieties.  [RHSE, Hortus].

Zygopetalum mackaii Hook.

An epiphytic orchid with small. 2-3-leved pseudo-bulbs, the leaves to 45cm long, and spikes of 7 or more fragrant, greenish-yellow flowers, marked with purple or brown.  [RHSD, Hortus].

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