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Monday, 23 March 2009

Daphne bholua Jacqueline Postill evergreen pink flowering fragrant shrub

Daphne sweet smelling in the spring
Daphne bholua Jacqueline Postill
Daphne bholua Jacqueline Postill
There are roughly 50-60 different varieties of the Evergreen and deciduous shrub Daphne, all of which belong to the Thymelaeaceae plant family. Daphne's are native across Eurasia and North Africa. They vary in size from small rockery or alpine sized plants to much larger ones suitable for a shrubbery or woodland area. The one pictured in this post is called Daphne bholua Jacqueline Postill. Most Daphne are scented but this particular variety is heavily fragrant.

Daphne bholua Jacqueline Postill
Flowering in late winter early spring, it is ideally planted near your front door simply because you get bright colourful flowers with an amazing perfume at a time of year when you may not venture to far into the garden.
Daphne bholua Jacqueline Postill
Planting should be undertaken in Autumn, ideally in a humus rich well drained soil. They prefer a neutral PH value (6.0-7.0) that is, not to acidic or alkaline. Daphne's generally do well in sun or partial shade, but some varieties do better in full shade.  Be sure to choose carefully where to plant your shrub simply because they sometimes do not do well being transplanted, so it's best to get it right first time. When you buy your Daphne be sure to choose a containerised not bare rooted one as they will generally do much better. As with all shrubs soak the root ball in a bucket of water prior to planting. Dig a hole twice the size of the pot or bare root and add in plenty of compost. Scatter a generous handful of fish blood and bone meal to give the plant a good start. In the first year keep the shrub well watered especially during the Summer months.
Daphne bholua Jacqueline Postill
Most Daphne's are slow growing and pruning should only be required to keep your shrub in shape. Always do this after the plant has finished flowering. Lightly forking in a handful of general purpose fertilizer around the base of your shrub in the spring will help it grow and keep it healthy.  Do add your favourite varieties and the ones you grow in the comments section.
Daphne bholua Jacqueline Postill
General discussion and your views are welcome please say hello. I regret however because of my busy schedule, I am unable to answer many questions. Sneaky advertising will be deleted sorry. Thanks so much for visiting my blog today.


Anonymous said...

Hi Simon, lovely photos. A friend suggested Daphne to me as a property border shrub. I need something that can provide privacy from the ground up to 6 ft. and about 15 feet across so I suppose a few shrubs will be needed. I prefer deciduous. I am in Nova Scotia zone 5-6. I've read Daphne's are fussy and die easily. Have you any advise? Thank you, Leigh

Marie said...

Pleased to meet you Simon,

I purchased Daphne x burkwoodii 'Carol Mackie' from Bluestone Perennials. I am in Pennsylvania USA zone 6b.

This is my first Daphne. It will be planted in an area that gets about 4 or 5 hours of sun. It is well drained with average+ soil. I have read horror stories of short life and aphid or fungal invasions. Do you have any advice on how to keep this shrub healthy?

I would like to get a few more for an area that is bright but with very little sun. Can you suggest a variety that will be happy under those conditions?

I would appreciate any advice. Thank you.

RainGardener said...

Hi Simon, I like that one and the stronger fragrance is an added plus. I've killed 3 Daphnes now and want to try again. I love they way they look and smell. I did have one that I didn't kill for years but it finally didn't come back one year - February Daphne mezereum. We called it 'our bloomin' stick' because it kind of looked like sticks sticking out with blooms all around them. Maybe I'll check out this one you posted.

simon tinks davis said...

Hi Leigh, I would suggest you look among the viburnum family of shrubs which I feel would be more suitable. There are both evergreen and deciduous varieties, early and later flowering. The only thing that would not be in abundance would be scent. Hope this helps, Simon

simon tinks davis said...

Hello Marie, pleased to meet you to. Daphnes can sometimes be difficult but this is the exception rather than the rule. Providing you plant it with plenty of good quality compost and dressing, making sure to feed it every year in the spring they should be fine. With regard to fungus and aphids, you should spray a combined insect/fungicide as soon as problems appear and continue every 2-3 weeks until the problem is solved. The Daphne Valerie Hillier, among others will tolerate semi shade but make your choice carefully as daphnes do like their sun! Regards Simon

simon tinks davis said...

Hi Raingardener, Yes sometimes they do just give up for no apparent reason. The one in the article has been with us for around 7-8 years ?? Seems very healthy so far. Thanks for your comment, all the best, Simon

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