Of course December is not a great month for spectacular sights in an Essex garden, however there is a surprising amount to see – the Viburnums flowering away in the bed just past the War Memorial.. In the bed just North of the John Ray Garden is an evergreen Lavatera – Mallow bush, with its purple trumpet shaped flowers. It should have stopped flowering in September, is this another sign of global warming? When all the oaks are losing their leaves, the almost evergreen Lucombe Oak (Tree No 30) is as green as ever. This is a rare species of oak and its parents are the Spanish Cork Oak and the beautiful Turkey Oak.