Daphne odoraIn the middle of winter Daphne odora is a stand out in the garden, as well as in nurseries where perfumed winter flowing plants can be the main attraction during colder months.
One of the most popular fragrant plants Daphne odora flowers from winter to spring. Waxy white and pink flowers and attractive mid green foliage make this a useful plant for the shaded border or for growing in containers.
Often seen as 'difficult to grow', 'fussy' and 'sulking' Daphne odora is actually not that hard to maintain if you follow a few basic rules.
Firstly consider that d.odora is not very hardy in exposed cold positions. However in the right position it is regarded as long lived and easy care.
Daphne odora Care
Basic care factors include;
- good drainage
- protection from extreme cold
- do not disturb
Daphne are one of the most popular of all the fragrant flowering plants with blooms that appear in the winter. Like most, but not all Daphne plants d.odora prefers a shaded position in a moist but well drained soil.
Given the dampness of the UK winter, it can be advisable to plant d.odora on a mound to improve drainage.
You will almost never need to water them, although a little liquid seaweed fertilizer in summer and when first planted will be beneficial.
Protection from freezes is important, so a sheltered position, or perhaps container growing and moving to a protected position in the depths of cold winters.
Daphne odora Propagation
Fairly easy from semi hardwood cuttings best taken from late spring through summer.
- Take a 20cm cutting of the new growth and strip back the lower leaves leaving 4 leaves on the top.
- Use a hormone rooting powder or similar and plant into a 50 % perlite 40% peat moss 10% sharp sand mixture.
- New cuttings will require some humidity, so either provide a misted environment or simply place a plastic bag over a frame on the pot to increase humidity.
- Cuttings will tale 6 - 8 weeks to form roots. At the first signs of new growth remove the plastic bag and place the cuttings in a shaded sheltered position.
- We usually do not transplant new plants until following year.
Pruning Daphne odora
This is a slow growing plant that generally does not require any pruning at all. Removal of any damaged growth or dead wood is all that is required.
Daphne odora varieties
The two main varieties are d.odora variegata and d.odora marginata, although a number of named cultivars are also available
- d.odora marginata.
Cream margins on the foliage give this a distinctive patterned look
- d.odora variegata
With strong buttery yellow variegation this variety adds extra impact in a shaded position.
- d.odora var. rubra
Flowers hold much more pink than the species, sometimes described as crimson, however, pink is more apt.