The echium pininiana – more commonly known as the giant viper’s bugloss, or tower of jewels – that lords it over Jenny Ellenger’s herbaceous border is something of a freak of nature.
A similar plant made the national press after a couple grew one from seed after seeing them while on holiday in Madeira.
They sent a picture of the plant to experts at Kew Gardens in London, who said that they were a rare sight in Britain.
The natural home of the striking plant is 1,000 metres up in the cloud forests of the Canary Islands and Madeira.
Keepers at the Temperate House at Kew, where the flowers are also grown, may therefore be interested to note that there are quite a number being grown in Jersey’s famously temperate climate.
However, few look like Jenny Ellenger’s specimen.