I’ve mentioned before that I had an RHS course lecturer who was keen on quick-fire quizzes of the kind ‘Name 6 blue flowers , 10 herbs etc’ and as I was taking some macro photographs of some rather lovely London Plane tree flowers recently, it got me to wondering if I knew any more trees whose flowers are distinctly ball-shaped. Since I surprised myself by getting to six, I thought that I would pull them together into another little collection of odd horticultural interest (to me at least – see here for previous posts on selections of bark, catkins, muscari, tree-lined avenues and yellow wayside flowers if interested).
So here we start with London Plane:
Then, one of my absolute favourites, Paper Mulberry
and its dramatic fruit
Next is Liquidambar:
The Osage orange can grow up to 15cm in diameter. It is also from the mulberry family.
The Dove tree/ Hankerchief tree:
The Powder Puff tree (small tree/medium shrub):
And the whole Mimosa genus
Not fiery, but nevertheless possible alternative entries are Viburnum opulus and V. × carlcephalum (which qualify for the ball of flowers, but are more bushy) and, of course, the mulberry tree (which is only marginal because neither the flowers or fruit are strictly ball-like).
Any more ideas?