Hardy cyclamen are among the most garden worthy of plants, bringing light and colour to shady places through autumn, winter and spring.
Part of the family Primulaceae, they are native to parts of Europe, especially around the Mediterranean basin, the Caucasus, Western Asia and parts of Northern Africa. Preferring shady conditions, the different species are found in a wide variety of habitats, usually on alkaline well- drained soils ranging from sea level to alpine conditions.
Although there are 23 species of cyclamen currently recognised, only three of these (C.hederifolium, C.coum and C. repandum) are regularly grown, although several others can be used to extend the range and season. My own collection, started in the early 1980s, includes 22 species, and many forms and cultivars which are grown around my garden and under glass, both cold and just frost free. I have also studied cyclamen species in the wild - in Turkey, Greece, Italy, Israel and most recently, France.
My collection is open by appointment to interested groups from September to March , and through the National Gardens Scheme as part of the Cherubeer Gardens Group. My one acre garden also includes a large collection of snowdrops and hellebores.