I can forgive a plant almost anything if it has a good scent, and this gorgeous shrub reminds me that we are in full spring mode, it’s no longer late winter even if the weather is trying to tell us otherwise at the moment!
The waxy flowers of Viburnam carlesii ‘Diana’ are rosy red in bud, opening to pink, and then fading to white as they age; they are exceptionally fragrant, and therefore worth planting next to a gate or path where you can catch the sweet spicy notes on the air.
But bear in mind that after flowering, this bushy, deciduous shrub is quite dull, and the reddish black berries in the autumn are probably only of interest to the birds, so a little thought might be given to disguise its drab appearance during the summer months. I’m about to plant an herbaceous clematis nearby where it can be supported as needed by ‘Diana’. Clematis x aromatica is my choice, also highly scented and it’s been on my wish list for ages.
This is the second ‘Diana’ that we’ve planted, the first succumbing to some unknown disease, but having looked into this it could have been Armillaria root rot whose symptoms ‘can be sly’, said a certain website – and I love this description – it certainly fooled us! Here, on Sussex clay ours grows quite slowly, to about one and a half metres but it can attain two.
NB Louise has published a beautifully produced book of her plant profiles – A Plant for Each Week of the Year. It costs £9.99 and is for sale in our online shop here.
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