But before sharing this plant with you, I have some other thank yous to make. Jo at The Good Life has given me the Best Blog Award. I am honored. I just couldn't choose 15 of my favorite blogs as I have so many, so I won't be tagging anyone. But Jo is just great to have passed this award on. Kudos, Jo.
Also, I never thanked those who gave me the Honest Scrap Award. They were James at Garden Chronicles and Rosey at Dung Hoe. I already answered this award here. A big thank you to both of you.
Garden blogging is such a community affair, as you see from the awards we pass on to each other. That's one of the things that keeps us connected and having fun at blogging.
A question to my readers. I have changed the color of my font to make it easier to read against the black background. Especially those of you who have trouble with font on black, please let me know if this is easier on your eyes. This blog is for you to enjoy and I want to make it that way.
Now back to my perfume plant, Osmanthus fragans.
Blossoms of Osmanthus fragrans
It is such an understated plant to look at. Waxy leaves with slightly serrated edges. An unformed bushy appearance. But when it blooms noses turn toward it. Mine loves the cooler weather of autumn, winter and spring and is starting its blooming cycle. Just to walk past it is an mesmerizing experience. It smells like apricots and peaches, but more delicate and warm.
Can you call a fragrance warm? This one is. It envelopes me each time I come near. Evening is the best time to smell it at its height, as the cool air lets the perfume expand into the air. That part of my garden smells like osmanthus in the cool of the dusk.
Osmanthus blooms on the old part of the plant, often the woody part, as you can see in the photo above. In researching this plant for this post, I just discovered this fact. I had pruned my Osmanthus late. Thus I'm getting lots of new green foliage, but no blossoms on this part. But this plant is so forgiving. It is giving me lots of blooms on the unpruned branches.
I grow mine in a pot, as it can get large, up to 6 feet high! But this plant is so easy, it doesn't mind the pot. It just needs a little morning light and no direct afternoon light and it will give and give.
Osmanthus is from China, where it is beloved. It is also known as Sweet Olive or Fragrant Olive. There this plant is used in teas, perfumes, cooking. There are even festivals held in China just for this plant in flower. I received it from a Taiwanese neighbor as a gift. He told me it is used in more expensive perfumes. Perhaps some of our own favorite perfumes use Osmanthus as an ingredient.
A gentle spirit
An unassuming spirit
Speaking only with its scent
Caressing me with a soft embrace of
You speak in dulcet tones
To those that will notice
Humbled in your presence
Watchful of your quiet voice
I receive from this sweet olive
The selfless gift of sensuality and love
It teaches me about the quiet gifts of life
Those that make no show
But offer me the sweet pleasure
of heavenly fragrance
Asking almost nothing in return
So few gifts come this way
How many plants do you have that are so easy, yet give so much?