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Daphne Cneorum - Hardy Perennial

Author: John Wood

Daphne Cneorum - Hardy Perennials and Old Fashioned Flowers

Daphne Cneorum Described.

Daphne Cneorum - Trailing Daphne; Common and Poetical Name, Garland Flower; Nat. Ord. Thymelaceæ.

An alpine shrub from Austria; dwarf, evergreen, and having a tendency to creep. It is deservedly a great favourite; it wins admiration by its neat and compact form and its dense and numerous half-globular heads of rosy pink flowers, which are exceedingly fragrant, in the way of the old clove carnation, but more full.

The flower buds are formed during the previous season of growth, like those of the rhododendron; for many days before the flowers open the buds have a very pleasing appearance, being closely packed and coral-like; when all the florets are expanded they form a half-globular head 1in. to 1½in. across, being of a lively pink colour. The flowers are composed of a tubular calyx, four-parted; leaves inversely ovate, lanceolate, pointed, and entire; about an inch long, and narrow; of a dark green colour and much substance, being arranged in circular form on the round and somewhat wiry, tough stems, which in time become very long and bare.

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Daphne Cneorum

In order to grow this shrub well, three conditions are needful, viz., a moderately pure atmosphere, exposure to full sunshine, and plenty of moisture; it also prefers peat or vegetable soil, but this is not strictly needful if the other conditions are present. I have grown the specimen, from part of which the illustration was drawn, for four years in rich loam, without a particle of peat, but the roots have been protected against drought by large stones at the base of small rockwork. Doubtless, peat, where it is plentiful, used in addition to the above compost, would prove beneficial. After a few years' growth in one position, bushes which have become long and bare in the stems may be transplanted with advantage, laying in the stems to a moderate depth, from which new roots will issue the first season; this is also the readiest way of propagation. February or September would be suitable months for such operation, but the latter would probably interfere with its flowering at that time, when frequently a second but spare crop is produced.

Flowering periods, April and May, and again in September.

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