Sunday, March 14, 2010

Daphne odora

Yesterday Wayne and I visited our friend Hilda to participate in a celebration of her 80th birthday. There are several reminders of her generosity in my garden, and the one I'm enjoying the most right now is shown above: Daphne odora. She gave this to me as a potted,  rooted cutting - a budded rooted cutting - in 2008. When I got home with it, I put it in one of the protected cold frames; that's where it's been since then, and it's still in the same pot in which it was brought home. It bloomed in the winter of 2009 from the buds on the rooted cutting. This year it's in bloom again, this time with more flowers.

Daphne odora is known to survive local winters occasionally, but there seems to be a grudging consensus that it is not really a plant adapted to our conditions. Still, many gardeners plant it and enjoy it as long as it lasts. This uncertainty about its long-term adaptability to our conditions has prompted me to keep my plant in one of the protected cold frames. It's a real pleasure to open the frames when this plant is in bloom: the fragrance is wonderful. And it's a nice way to be reminded of a dear friend.

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