Gotta Garden

Friday, November 30, 2007

Wintersweet (or Not)

Just when I was going to give myself a good pat on the back for getting my spring bulbs in, I remembered that there are bulbs around the Redspire Pear (that is coming down).....There are Mondragon and Ice Follies Daffodils, plus several nice clumps of Cream Beauty Crocus. Okay, I could probably stand to lose the Ice Follies Daffodils, but really, the others are quite nice, permitting, I'll get to those very soon.

The weather has just been amazing, I can't get over it. Thursday, I was in Charlottesville all day attending a master gardener seminar. Too bad Charlottesville can't be closer. I hated to lose a nice day outside, but you gotta take advantage of those educational opportunities.

For several days, I have stood on my deck and looked down at the Wintersweet (Chimonanthus) and thought, huh, I think it might actually have buds. It has never bloomed and I remember reading that they can take up to seven years to bloom. I bought mine several years ago from a reputable company because of its promised fragrance (I do love fragrant shrubs). Wednesday, I actually ventured down to look and lo and behold, it is blooming! I grabbed the camera and went down to try to get some pictures. The result is below. But, and here is a big but, I couldn't help but fragrance. None. Not at all. I mean, this is not a particularly attractive shrub, but I'll put up with a lot for fragrance.

So......I googled and came up with this Wikipedia article and do you (if you clicked on it) see what it says?? Just in case you missed it, "An evergreen shrub that grows up to 6 m tall, with leaves 2–18 cm long and 1.5–8 cm broad, and white to yellow flowers that appear in winter and are only slightly scented if at all." (emphasis mine) Now, there is another variety, but mine clearly is not that one. I was sent me the described one, obviously, and I have spent years growing this scentless thing! Hmmmmph. I am very disappointed, to put it mildly.

I know better. I really do. If you asked me (because I have made this mistake before), I would insist that you only buy fragrant shrubs in bloom...because so many aren't....that are supposed to be. Or, from a really trusted source (like the no longer Flower Scent Garden)....really trusted. There are lilacs that lack much of the famous scent and mock oranges that have no fragrance....I know about these! Well, add this one to the list. Only buy or acquire a Wintersweet with fragrance.

This one is coming out. Probably in spring because I have too many things on my fall to-do list already.


Annie in Austin said...

Too bad yours is the unscented kind, Gotta Garden - you do try hard to get fragrance in the garden. Did the Osmanthus/tea olive make it through the summer?

Mine is blooming now.

Annie at the Transplantable Rose

Thoughts on Life and Millinery. said...

Sorry about the hedge...would you consider spraying a little scented oil around it's base just to fake it until later?

Also, what is it about the Ice Follies daffodils? They are so robust, always come back when none of the other varieties return, but frankly I think they are the plain jane of the daffodil world.

kate said...

Thank goodness for Butterscotch Oat Squares, chocolate and other solace food. It is so disappointing and frustrating (to put it mildly) when we spend so much time hoping and anticipating for a plant/shrub to be as advertised.

I'm glad you are going to save the daffodils even if it means more work. Hopefully your weather will stay mild and let you get a few more things done.

Christine said...

Are you going to try to find it a new home? (Not necessarily in your yard) I think the fact that it blooms in winter is rather interesting, maybe someone else would, too.

jodi said...

Katie, have you checked your wintersweet at night? I don't have one, but sometimes as you know, plants have scent at night and not during the day. It might be worth a try...
And good on you for getting your bulbs all in. Mine are about 2/3 in...and that other third is going to be a bit of a trick, given the snow! Argh!

Andrea's Garden said...

hi there, I am sorry to read yours is unscented. I have got a number of scented shrubs in the garden, but I will settle for nice bloom, too. I don't order shrubs and trees anymore from a catalogue since I have had poor quality once too often. Good luck on all your projects and have a quiet Advent season. Andrea

Jenny Lee Fowler said...

So glad to have come across your post. I just noticed the plant for the first time and will be sure to look for it in bloom!

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