Sniff Away the Winter Blues

By Gardennia nutii

Hamamelis x intermedia ‘Jelena’

A very cool thing happened while walking my dog the other day early on a dark, rainy, foggy morning. I was greeted by the lovely scent of witch hazel (Hamamelis), a row of which is planted along a nearby street. This time of year, I spend more time sniffing shrubs than my dog…and who can blame me? Hamamelis, Sarcococca and even some Viburnum are all proudly showcasing their enticing scents.

If you’re not lucky enough to have these plants in your yard, visit Elk Rock Garden as I did recently. Also known as The Bishop’s Close, the garden has a great collection of winter-blooming scented plants and a mass of other early bloomers like Crocus, Eranthis (winter aconite, a buttercup relative), hellebores, and Galanthus (snowdrop).

Next time the winter slows you down, I recommend seeking out a winter treat and sniffing away the blues.