If you asked me what my favourite winter shrub is, I would reply sweetest honeysuckle (Lonicera fragrantissima) without hesitation. Its flower grows on bare branches and has such a beautiful strong sweet scent throughout January and February. Native from China, the bush can grow about 2 meters in a sunny or part-shade position. We have about five of these around the garden – find one in the long border or East Garden next time you visit Gravetye.
The honeysuckle gives me warm hope for spring at this chilly time of year.
Words and photograph by Martin
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