Daphne odora

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Daphne odora
Daphne odora-ja01.jpg
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
(unranked): Angiosperms
(unranked): Eudicots
(unranked): Rosids
Order: Malvales
Family: Thymelaeaceae
Genus: Daphne
Species: D. odora
Binomial name
Daphne odora

Daphne odora (winter daphne) is a species of flowering plant in the family Thymelaeaceae, native to China, later spread to Japan and Korea. It is an evergreen shrub, grown for its very fragrant, fleshy, pale-pink, tubular flowers, each with 4 spreading lobes, and for its glossy foliage. It rarely fruits, producing red berries after flowering.

The Latin specific epithet odora means "fragrant".[1]

It grows best in fertile, slightly acid, peaty, well-drained soils. It grows in full sun or partial shade, and is hardy to −10 °C (14 °F), possibly lower. In Korea, the plant is also poetically called "churihyang" - a thousand mile scent - referring to the fragrance of the foliage. In Japan, the plant is more commonly known as "jinchoge".

Plants are not long lived, senescing within 8 to 10 years.[2] Daphne generally do not react well to root disturbance, and may transplant badly. D. odora is also susceptible to virus infection, which causes leaf mottling.[3]

All parts of the plant are poisonous to humans and a range of domestic animals[4] and some people experience dermatitis from contact with the sap.[5]

Daphne odora is propagated by semi-ripe cuttings in summer.


  • D. odora f. Rosacea has white and pink flowers.
  • D. odora f. Rubra has dark red-pink flowers with reduced fragrance.
  • D. odora 'Aureomarginata' has yellow edged leaves, and is hardier and more suitable to cultivation than the plain-leaved forms.[3] This cultivar has gained the Royal Horticultural Society's Award of Garden Merit.[6]


  1. ^ Harrison, Lorraine (2012). RHS Latin for gardeners. United Kingdom: Mitchell Beazley. p. 224. ISBN 9781845337315. 
  2. ^ Flora, The Gardener's Bible, ABC Publishing, Sydney, 2005
  3. ^ a b The Reader's Digest Gardeners' Encyclopaedia of Plants & Flowers, Sydney, 1998
  4. ^ http://www.anbg.gov.au/poison-plants/D-poison.html
  5. ^ Royal Horticultural Society entry for Daphne odora
  6. ^ "RHS Plant Selector - Daphne odora 'Aureomarginata'". Retrieved 14 June 2013.