The walk to our front door is populated by fragrant plants for all seasons. One of the prominent winter scents will come from Edgeworthia chrysantha, probably in about a month. This is also known as the Japanese Paperbush (or in Japan as Mitsumata). The inner bark is used to make traditional paper in Japan from ancient times and since the Meiji era, it is the paper used for Japanese currency. Debarked branches are also used in the flower arranging industry. If the branches are soaked (10 min. to an hour) they become flexible and can be shaped. The branches subdivide into threes at the junctions which enhances they arranging potential.
In the garden, the little buds (about half an inch across right now) swell throughout the winter waiting (in our area) for February to open into scented yellow flowers. The attractive fragrance is a good reason for planting it near a regularly walked winter path. The flowers open before the large leaves which is striking with the reddish brown bark. The plant grows to about 6 x 6 feet here in the Pacific NW.
- Nikon D90