It's early this year. Normally it flowers in February. But, for the last two days I've been hit by a fabulous vanilla scent as I enter or leave the house by the front entrance. The plant can be yards away from the point where the fragrance first hits but there is no mistaking the impact. It will continue for three to four weeks, at its best on still days but still obvious even on our frequent windy ones. Then it will go to sleep again for the rest of the year.
It's not a pretty plant. Just a small, very hardy shrub with non-descript oval, evergreen leaves and a rather untidy habit that needs a good trim after flowering. The flowers are small - whispy, white affairs. It produces berries in abundance - small black ones that even the birds ignore - but these don't stand out as a decorative feature in their own right. So, for eleven months of the year it's a bit of a waste of space. But, oh, the scent as the year is turning more than justifies the space it occupies in my shady front garden.
|Sarcococca confusa winter flowers|