National Collection - Daboecia

A summer-flowering heather National Collection at Holehird

Of the three Heather genera - Calluna, Daboecia and Erica - Daboecia is the least well-known.

The plants are distinctive with their large bell-shaped flowers in colours ranging from dark crimson through to purple, mauve and white and with a variety of flower shapes.  They are at their best from August to October.

Daboecia shares similarities with Erica, or bell heather, but has a more upright habit and much larger bells.  It consists of two species, namely D.cantabrica, and D.azorica which is confined to the Azores. Holehird currently holds 52 cultivars of D.cantabrica and D. x scotica.

There have been heathers at Holehird since the beginning of the LHS in 1969.  The two summer heather beds, located above the meadow, contain some of the very large, older Daboecia, alongside newer cultivars.  National Collection status was granted in December 2014.  The Collection is regularly updated as new cultivars emerge.

A leaflet about Daboecia at Holehird is available for sale in Visitor Information.

Plant Heritage

Plant Heritage, formerly The National Council for the Conservation of Plants and Gardens (NCCPG), is the co-ordinating charity behind the National Plant Collection scheme. Its aims are to conserve, document, promote and make available the great diversity of garden plants for the benefit of horticulture. The Lakeland Horticultural Society work collaboratively with Plant Heritage, there are now almost seven hundred National Collections around the United Kingdom.