My Arranger and I enjoyed a glass of wine and then dinner on our screened-in porch last evening. It was cooler, and the sky was overcast so we did not have to contend with the late afternoon sun. We were both struck by the marvelous fragrance that was filling our porch.
The tea olives (Osmanthus fragrans) are in bloom.
I wrote about the tea olive in Guess What’s in My Garden!:
“There are some shrubs that creep up on you. By that I mean that they may just sit there in the garden, growing peacefully, filling a gap, and not drawing attention to themselves. But then something happens as you pass by that knocks you over. Such a plant is tea olive.”
There are two of them in my garden, one on each side of the porch, and in eight years they have reached well over ten feet. Actually I have top pruned them at that height for several years to keep them from dropping leaves and such into the gutters. Tea olives are evergreen shrubs and make a wonderful year round addition to the garden.
I have always contended that the flowers are inconspicuous, only alert to their presence by the fragrance they emit. This year, however, they are overflowing with blossoms, more than ever in this or our Chapel Hill garden.
The flowers this year are particularly attractive, but the joy of tea olive is still the fragrance that wafts across our porch.
It certainly added a touch of romantic magic to our evening.