Magnolia blooms herald spring's arrival
The advent of spring has been declared in Cornwall after a newly-created contest sparked fevered competition between gardens.
Six champion magnolia trees were nominated in the Duchy with the first to sprout 50 fully opened flowers to be returned the winner.
The official result of the 50 Blooms race is expected to be confirmed today – and with it the end of winter – but the Tregothnan Estate, near Truro is already claiming victory.
Head gardener Jonathan Jones said the estate and tea plantation counted 50 blooms "in full show" on Friday. "It is both spectacular, magnificent and very unusual – more importantly we beat our partners in Darjeeling," he said.
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