Sadly there is no scratch’n’sniff plug-in on the Internet. So you cannot smell the winter honeysuckle (Lonicera fragrantissima). It’s almost a rose scent and intensely powerful rather than evanescent like so many flowers. When you stick your nose in a blossom, the fragrance comes up big and doesn’t quit. The shrub is straggly in an old-fashioned way and the flowers themselves are so tiny they don’t make any display. This plant is often described as invasive, but the bush in my backyard is clearly very old and hasn’t spread or thrown off any suckers. The fragrance from this one bush perfumes my whole backyard from February to when the heat kicks in late spring.
After 10 years gardening on solid rock in Rollingwood, I moved into a 40's cottage in the North Loop area spring 2007. The little postage stamp yard is black clay and no one had ever dug a single flower bed. After visiting Key West a few years ago, I came back inspired by the little frame cottages, white painted railings, and rustling palm leaves. So the plan is: desert tropical cottage garden.