A garden in Tresco on the Isles of Scilly is certainly looking forward to a blossoming New Year. 

The 2024 Tresco Abbey Garden New Year flower count saw 287 different species of exotic plants in bloom on New Year's Day, thanks to the island's mild microclimate which sees the gardens ablaze with colour, even throughout the winter months. 

 The flower count, which takes place annually, celebrates flowering plants otherwise unseen anywhere else in the UK.  

Described as ‘Kew Gardens without the glass’, the glorious garden hosts a global gathering of 2500 species from all the Mediterranean climate zones of the world. This year’s count saw the usual range of Camellia, Aloe and Protea blooms, as well as some more unusual specimens like the Telanthophora grandifolia from the cloud forests of Southern Mexico and the Jovellana violacea, a Calceolaria relative from Chile. 

Andrew Lawson, Head Gardener at Tresco Abbey Gardens, said: “The annual flower count not only marks the beginning of a fresh year in the garden’s life, but also stands as a treasured island tradition which has taken place for the last 150 years. I take great joy in putting down tools and picking up a pen and paper to count up how many plants we have blossoming in the garden!”  

The flower count this year was completed by Abbey gardener Brett Haythorpe and garden students Harriet Bradnock, Hannah Moore and Phoebe Jayes. 

Tresco enjoys exceptional hours of sunshine and the warmth of the Gulf Stream, meaning snow, ice and frost are infrequent visitors, allowing the sub-tropical plants to flourish throughout the year.