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perfumes and colors of the osmanthus fragrans

photo credit: coniferconifer orange osmanthus via photopin (license)

Its scientific name is Osmanthus fragrans, in the Bel Paese it is better known with the Italian name of Osmanto Odoroso, also known as Giant Osmanthus.
The shrub belongs to the Oleaceae family, which in turn belongs to the order of the Lamiales; its origins are to be found in China and Japan, where it grows spontaneously.
 Osmanthus fragrans has dark green oblong leaves, similar to those of the laurel plant, but characterized by a slightly thorny margin. Its flowers are small and emerge for their intense and enveloping fragrance.
It is an evergreen shrub capable of reaching important dimensions, also used for the creation of particularly decorative and fragrant hedges. However, Osmanthus fragrans can also be grown in pots. The plant lives perfectly in areas of mild temperature, in fact the Osmanthus can not stand for very long periods of very cold climates; the shrub fears especially the particularly cold winds.

Cultivation methods

Being a plant particularly resistant to diseases the  Osmanthus fragrans does not need a lot of care, the first great wisdom of its cultivation is certainly to keep the shrub away from freezing. Despite this, those who live in cold areas should not give up cultivating its Osmanthus plant, to do it in the best way it will be enough to cultivate it in pots, so you can put it away during the colder seasons.
Because the shrub shows itself in all its splendor must be cultivated following a few small rules: first of all you have to think about the soil,  Osmanthus fragrans needs acid and slightly sandy soils, in this regard it is necessary to clarify that the soil is not must never be water, the plant fears moisture that, if excessive, causes root rot, this despite the month of May until September, Osmanthus needs to be irrigated abundantly. Moreover, in order for the shrub to grow beautiful and lush, between the end of February and the first days of March it is necessary to give it a good organic fertilizer. Pruning, however, must be performed between the end of the winter season and the principle of spring.
Both in pots and hedges, the  Osmanthus fragrans is an easy-to-manage plant.

Diseases and treatments in short

As already mentioned, Osmanthus is a resistant plant, but this does not mean that it is unassailable. It may happen that its leaves are attacked by cochineal, this occurs especially when the plant is grown in an area with a particularly hot and dry climate. To eradicate the insect you must proceed to perform a massive pruning, so as to permanently remove the affected branches. The cochineal is also eliminated by spraying white mineral oil over the entire surface of the plant. Of course, before using the product you must always read the instructions in the package carefully.

Curiosity

The Osmanthus fragrans with its rustic beauty is the subject of a famous poem of Lombard poet and writer Vittorio Sereni. The composition, entitled September, describes with intense words and loads of musicality the atmosphere created by the September flowering of Osmanthus.

 

 

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