Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Fragrant on the First - January '13

Happy New Year to all my fellow bloggers and readers.  Without planning to do so, I took off most of December.  It was a nice break to get ready for Christmas.  Before taking the break I was reading Carolyn's Shade Garden post about Edgeworthia chrysantha, one of my favorite winter shrubs.  My comment to Carolyn was about how happy my Edgeworthia shrubs have been in my garden.

I am the editor for our Master Gardener group's newsletter.  Each general meeting I ask for ideas of something to add to the newsletter.  One idea was to share what is blooming and fragrant each month.  I love this idea and am going to share what is blooming and fragrant in my garden on the first of each month with you.   Our first of the "Fragrant on the First" will be a combination of my follow-up on my Edgeworthia and sharing what is fragrant in Upstate South Carolina on the first of each month.

When we moved here in July 2010, I brought a lot of plants with me.  One carried from Virginia plant was a Valentine's Day gift from my husband, an Edgeworthia chrysantha.  I had to figure out where to plant this shrub.  In Virginia it was on the front porch, full morning sun until about noon, then in full shade of the house. I knew it could take some sun, but would like afternoon shade in this zone 7b/ 8 garden.    I found a great spot.  The Edgeworthia would also serve as a shade provider for some Sarcoccoca hookeriana, Sweet shrub that could benefit from more shade.   The photo below was taken in March of 2011, there are a couple Edgeworthia in the garden, look like naked sticks.   The one from VA is the one furthest from the camera.

You can see the VA Edgeworthia better in this photo.   This was taken in January 2012.  See it is full of blooms.  January 2012, a year ago!


Over the next few months I had fragrant blooms.  It is wonderful to stand on the deck and have the heavenly fragrance float on the breeze.  The photo below was taken on February 15, 2011, full bloom for Valentine's Day.  Perfect plant.


Same plants, same day, different angle.  February in SC.  


It continued to bloom well into March.  The velvety foliage is just starting to emerge as the flowers drop.  You can see I have added some ferns, a hellebore and some Bleeding Hearts under the spreading branches.


I posted a nice photo of the foliage with raindrops way back in 2009.

Fast forward to this winter.  I wanted to share how fast these Edgeworthia have filled in.  The two photos below were taken December 15th, 2012.  Yesterday the blooms were just starting to open, and yes, they are fragrant.


Two shrubs, filling in and branching out, making this spot one of the most fragrant spots in my garden in January.

Think I will try my hand at  propagating one of them this year, a perfect plant for a winter garden.   What is fragrant in your garden in January?

©Copyright 2012 Janet. All rights reserved. Content created by Janet for The Queen of Seaford. words and photos by Janet,The Queen of Seaford.

50 comments:

  1. Unfortunately nothing as we are 3 feet under snow...my herbs indoors are my fragrance right now...I have long admired this shrub in Carolyn's garden...I love the idea of your fragrance on the first...Happy New Year Janet!!

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    1. Donna@GEV, yes, I guess three feet of snow would do you in. Hope you have some fragrances soon!

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  2. Hands down, one of my favorite shrubs. Happy New Year to you and your family Janet.

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    1. Les, yes mine too, thanks! I like the big ones in the NBG by the Japanese garden, first time I saw how large they could get.
      Happy New Year to you too

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  3. Noooooo! I have vowed not to buy more plants this year. I tend to fall in love with everything I see. I do love those Edgeworthia buds though, curled up looking like kitty-cat paws.

    Happy New Year Janet! I don't have anything fragrant right now in my garden, but the sweetbox and the witch hazel should be opening soon.

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    1. Alison, you NEED and I do mean NEED with all caps, an Edgeworthia. It would give you something fragrant at this time of year!!!

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  4. I put one of these in my garden a year ago after reading one of Carolynn's posts. It easily became one of my winter favorites! I am the editor of my MG's quarterly newsletter too! I am always looking for information to write about. Do you mind if I steal this idea? Best wishes to you Janet! I hope your garden will bring you much fulfillment in 2013!

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    1. Karin, You were smart to plant it! Feel free to use any idea you wish!

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  5. It's beautiful! I have a good spot for one if it doesn't require super draining soil...Right by the patio door where I can catch its fragrance.

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    1. Gail, I am not as concerned about it with well drained soil as I am with the Winter Daphne. Plant it high if you are worried.

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  6. Janet,
    Our plant was leafing out, the frost kicked off the leaves. Now it is just buds, can't wait to see it in full bloom. Happy New Years to you!!!

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    1. Randy, this crazy winter will have a lot of plants leafing out early. It will be in full bloom soon!

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  7. You have been missing for awhile and I just popped in to see if you were posting and you are. Glad you are back. That is a shrub I cannot grow up here, but I like it very much. The fragrance is so enticing. Happy New Year.

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    1. Donna@GWGT, Yes, seems I took a break. Glad you popped over! Yes, I think you are a bit too far north for this one.

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  8. What a lovely shrub! I wish I could grow it here. How nice to have blooms in January; it's bitterly cold here, and the only thing fragrant I have is some rosemary indoors.

    I took an unintentional blogging break most of December, too; it's fun to get back in the swing of things and catch up with everyone. Thanks for posting your mermaid on Facebook--I don't know why that's what I remember most from the first posts of yours that I read:) Wishing you a very Happy New Year, too!

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    1. Rose, Maybe you can grow it there? Sure is a great plant. Maybe keep it in a pot and bring it in the garage or something?
      Glad you liked the mermaid pic.

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  9. Oh how lovely Janet! What a wonderful shrub to have in your garden at this time of the year. Happy 2012 to you

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  10. Welcome back...and you came out swinging. I thought Hammemelis would fulfill this role, but even in full bloom I can detect no trace of fragrance from the lovely 'Dianne'. Now, thanks to you, I know what to do to fix the problem.

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    1. Ricki, haha thanks! I have some hamamelis in the front but it is so small, only a couple blooms on it. Yes, you need to fix it with adding an Edgeworthia.

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  11. Happy New Year, Janet. You know I love this shrub, but I am truly amazed at how quickly yours filled out. Thanks for linking to my post. Edgeworthia needs to be more widely grown.

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    1. Carolyn@Shade Gardens, Yes, I know you do. I thought you would be amazed at how fast mine grew. I think everyone should have one!

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  12. I love fragrant shrubs. I have lilac and clethra. Sadly here in zone 5 nothing list blooming right now.

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    1. Jason, I love fragrant shrubs too. Would witch hazels grow in your area?

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  13. Nothing is fragrant in my garden right now. Most of my garden is asleep. :o) I'm not familiar with edgeworthia but I'm interested in anything that makes my garden smell good. I like the way the flowers droop instead of being perky.

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    1. Tammy, You would love this shrub. I will post pictures of the foliage later in the year. The perfect pendulant blooms are wonderful.

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  14. I love the idea for your newsletter. When I volunteered at a botanical garden one of the things they did was to clip flowers of blooming or interesting plants and post them at the entrance of the garden. Visitors would then know what plants to look for on any given day. It was amazing to see just how many plants can be enjoyed year round.

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    1. Marguerite, I like that kind of thing at botanical gardens...makes the visit much more interesting.

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  15. I love my Edgeworthia, but it has not grown nearly as well as yours. Mine is in full sun also zone 7ish. Maybe I need to move it, but I hate to do it. Let me know how the propagation goes.

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    1. Gardening under the influence, I will let you know how the propagation goes. Full sun? All day full sun? Do you have irrigation for it? that might help if it is in full sun.

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  16. Janet, have you ever had problems with a the leaves on just one branch wilting in late July/August and then dying. This is the second year my Edgeworthia has done this. I moved it from dry semi-shade to a spot that gets full afternoon sun but is more moist. It is more vigorous but it may be too hot.

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    1. Gene, I haven't had any problems with this one. I think it needs moist soil and some sun, so maybe yours will do better...as long as it doesn't have wet feet. Make sure it drains well.

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  17. Dear Janet,
    it sounds utterly lovely, your fragrant shrub! First I thought: I know it - I had it in my (ex) garden too - but that's wrong: I had Viburnum farreri, so I will go to Berlin's Botanical Garden and see if I can find yours - and smell at it. Happy New Year!

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    1. Britta, It is a lovely shrub in all seasons. Hope Berlin's Botanical Garden has one.

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  18. Happy New Year to you too! I love these shrubs and plan to add more to my garden. Mine if finally filling in as well. When I visited Riverbanks Zoo they were everywhere and so pretty just like yours. I am reminded of Christmas ornaments hanging on a tree.

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    1. Tina, One should have lots of these!! Glad yours is filling out. Yes, it is like ornaments.

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  19. Such an interesting-looking shrub. Either the ones I've come across at the JC Raulston Arboretum don't have any fragrance or I just can't detect it (I can't smell the fragrance of moonflowers either.) It's wonderful to have fragrant winter bloomers in the garden.

    Happy New Year!

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    1. Sweetbay, I am surprised! Maybe it was the wrong time of day, sometimes fragrance is released more prominently at dusk or sunrise.

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  20. What a wonderful thing! Right now our fragrance and color comes from our Winter Sun Mahonias. Oh, so pleasant to walk outside and sniff the breeze.

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    1. Carolyn NC, think you would love this one!! It is wonderful to walk outside and sniff the breeze.

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  21. I've never seen this shrub before. The flowers are simply stunning! Thanks for introducing me to something new.

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    1. Mr Brown Thumb, Hope you find one and plant it immediately!!

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  22. I love the idea of posting what's fragrant on the first, Janet! You should consider a link party--I would play! ;-)

    Your edgeworthia is amazing--I'm so envious. My newly planted bush has one tiny, soon to bloom flower, but I'll take it! I can't wait to see how it will look next year. The witch hazel (also newly planted) looks about to pop--can't wait. The paperwhites are providing a nice sweetness throughout the house. I tried a different variety this year, and it doesn't have the overpowering, sickly sweet scent--it's just a lovely, light fragrance.

    While they're not blooming, many of the herbs are providing a great pick-me-up with their fragrance, particularly in the recent gray days. I cut some rosemary two days ago, and while I was in the herb garden, I also picked a bit of lavender, mint, and lemon balm, just for the fragrance. It was a terrific mood booster.

    Soon, though, my winter daphne will be blooming, and the entrance path to the house will smell amazing.

    Thanks for a terrific topic! Hope you have a lovely week!

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    1. Julie, I will see about adding a link party to the next one. Thanks for the suggestion. Your Edgeworthia is still young and small. My daphne is full of buds....can't wait for it to open!

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  23. hi Janet, Happy New Year! I think the Edgeworthia chrysantha is just beautiful. I admired it on Carolyn's blog as well and wish it was hardy here. I like the idea of reporting on what is fragrant in the garden every month. I would love to have more fragrant plants and welcome any suggestions.

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    1. Jennifer, Yes, Carolyn did a great post on it. What zone are you in? Will keep my eyes open for you.

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  24. Happy New Year and also Happy Blogiversary! It is a fun ride this here thing called blogging isnt it? I am ever so happy to have met you at the Spring Fling but am sad we did not have more time to chat with ya. I was just saying the same thing to Rose as I have been chatting with you two on blogs for some time now. With you being so close to us, we shall surely make it up your way or you down our way in 2013 girl.... Love this sweetly scented beauty you speak of today....

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    1. Skeeter, thanks!! We do need to make a plan to get together.

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  25. This is why I love garden blogging - another new plant to me. And one that it seems I could grow here thanks to the maritime climate. In the mean time, I have a lovely Viburnum, which sadly I cannot smell as I seem to have a permanent cold, and a newly flowering hammamelis. One of the things I promised myself when I moved here was that I would pay more attention to winter interest, so thank you for another candidate to add to the mix.

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  26. Janet, I think you would love this plant in your garden.

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