A man has grown Britain’s biggest echium plant after saving it from a dumpster.
Tree surgeon Darren Wilson took the plant home three years ago after he saw it had been chucked away on a job he was working on.
He saved it and planted it in front of his house, and it has now grown to be the tallest in Britain—at 18th feet, it’s even taller than his house.
Echium plants are generally biannual, which means they usually flower in their second year.
However, Darren’s echium plant has flowered in its third year, meaning it had a whole extra year of growing before it flowered.
The 39-year-old from Saltash, Cornwall, believes a combination of good sunlight and a winter fleece during the cold months have helped it grow.
He said that after he and his wife measured the enormous plant, they decided to do some research online and try to find out how tall the biggest one was.
Their research revealed that the tallest known echium in the UK was 16-feet tall—two whole feet shorter than Darren’s.
“We measured it Sunday and it had already grown three inches from Friday. It should stop growing once it’s finished flowering. Al the flowers will turn to seeds and the whole thing will die… But I reckon it’s still got another month’s growth.”
Darren stumbled upon the echium, which was much smaller at the time, in a clearance job he was doing. Since then, he’s been protecting the magnificent plant and wrapping it up in winter.
As for what the neighbors think of the tree-like plant?
Darren says: “One guy actually said he’s pretty sure it runs around the street at night when we’re all in bed.
“When you come up the road it’s just right there in your eyeline, so it stands out—it looks good, very impressive.” We could never deny that.