Daphne tangutica Retusa Group

“Frost arghhhh!!!!!”  These were my first bleary thoughts as I looked out of the window at 7.00am this morning.  “If I rub my eyes it might just be a bit of heavy dew”.  There was a slim chance of a late April Fool.  Nope, sorry definitely a proper grown up frost and the only fool is me.  The panic high led swiftly to a depressive low.  I know that one should never get complacent about the weather in this country and there are always tales of “remember when it snowed at Easter, ha ha!” but this really is not on. We are being cruelly taunted.  As I had the day off I checked into Head Office and Hero, God bless her, told me that there had been no frost in the garden, just 3 miles away from the window of despair.  After that the day became beautiful, warm sun and light benign breezes.  Panic over, for the moment.

This Daphne tangutica Retusa Group is perhaps one of the less dramatic of its family.  It only reaches 1m in height but its tubular white flowers, which are purple on the outside, are both pretty and fragrant.  These appear in late winter and early spring when every bloom is especially appreciated.  It is a little on the tender side and although evergreen in ideal conditions, it will shed its leaves when the temperature gets too low.  This is one of our plants that needs a big red arrow above it to bring to the attention of the uninitiated its sublime beauty.

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