- Position: full sun or partial shade
- Soil: moderately fertile, well-drained, humus-rich soil
- Rate of growth: slow-growing
- Flowering period: January to March
- Hardiness: borderline hardy (may need winter protection)
Lustrous, deep green leaves provide a handsome silhouette throughout the year, but it is for the small clusters of highly scented flowers that this rounded, evergreen shrub is most highly prized. Appearing in mid-winter, they open from purple-pink buds to reveal their pale pink petals, which usually have a richer pink reverse. Plant it somewhere that you pass-by regularly to make sure you can enjoy their delicious scent.
- Garden care: Keep pruning to a minimum since the plant is susceptible to die-back. Where necessary after flowering, lightly trim to remove misplaced branches and maintain a compact habit.
- CAUTION toxic if eaten/skin irritant
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Q:Hi - I bought one of these shrubs a couple of years ago, and very soon after planting, all the leaves from the lower 12" or so of the plant fell off, leaving long bare stems. The upper half of the plant has flourished, and is now flowering, but I'm not sure what to do about it's long, leggy bare stems. I'm loathe to cut the whole shrub down to a few inches, as I will lose all the lovely growth from the top, and it's very slow-growing. However, I'm not very experienced about under-planting, which might disguise it a little. Is there anything you can suggest? Lily8Asked on 2/27/2014 by Lily8 from London
Plants will loose leaves when they are stressed. This can be caused by several reasons, shock from planting, too much or too little water, too much fertiliser or other chemicals in the soil. The fact that it has new foliage and is flowering on the upper part of the plant shows it is settling now.
Daphnes don't like being pruned so I definitely wouldn't cut it down, but you can give it a light trim to keep it compact after it has flowered. Also I would mulch in the spring with a well-rotted organic manure to keep the roots cool, but keep the mulch away from the stem.
Regarding underplanting, don't plant too close to the Daphne as you don't want it to be competing for moisture and nutrients, but you could plant with Helleborus, http://www.crocus.co.uk/search/_/search.helleborus/sort.0/
spring flowering bulbs, or shade tolerate hardy geraniums like Geranium Dreamland for instance.
http://www.crocus.co.uk/plants/_/geranium-dreamland--bremdream/classid.2000019631/Answered on 2/28/2014 by Anonymous from Crocus
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