Rose Daphne (Daphne cneorum) is also called Garland Flower. It is from Central to Southern Europe. Rose Daphne is an evergreen shrub with a height of six inches and a spread of two to three feet. The leaves are oblong, linear, slightly leathery and more numerous towards the end of downy branchelts. Flowers come in pink or rosy red and are richly fragrant. The flowers bloom from spring to early summer.
Rose Daphne is hardy in USDA zones four to eight. In cooler summer regions, rose daphne should be planted in full sun. In hot summer regions, it should be planted where it receives shade in the afternoon sun.
Rose Daphne needs fast draining, nutrient rich soil. You can provide this for them by tilling the area in the flower bed where you want them to grow to a depth of six inches. Place three inches of compost on the tilled soil. Till the soil and compost together until they are completely mixed. Now, you need the pH of the soil. You can purchase kits at many nurseries. You can also send a sample to the soil lab in your area and get pH as well as a nutrient profile. Adjust the pH so that it is nearly neutral. This soil is now ready for rose daphnes.
It is best to keep rose daphnes out of strong winds or they will grow up leaning against the wind. Before planting rose daphne, make sure that is really where you want it. Rose Daphne does not transplant well once it becomes established.
You can propagate rose daphne in one of three ways. If you collect some fresh seed from a rose daphne, you can sow it where you want it to grow. This should be done in the early fall. If the seed is not very fresh, however, it will not germinate well.
You can take softwood cuttings in the spring. You then root these cuttings in a mixture of peat moss and sand, so that the rooting medium drains quickly. Keep the soil moist but not soggy.
Tip laying means to take one of the growing tips to the ground. It will eventually develop roots. At this point you can cut the new plant loose from the mother plant and place it where you want it.
Rose Daphnes should be pruned in the early fall, after they stop blooming. They would appreciate a top dressing of compost in the spring, before the blooms start.
Rose Daphnes are vulnerable to leaf spot, crown rot, and cankers. They also suffer from aphids, mealybugs, and scales. Predatory insects will eat the aphids, mealybugs, and scales if you have a mild infestation of the pests. For a severe infestation, Neem Oil will be necessary.
Leaf spot can be controlled by removing affected branches and fertilizing the plant with a side dressing of compost or other fertilizer. Crown rot can be avoided by planting your rose daphnes in well drained soil. If your plant develops canker, you need to treat it immediately by cutting off that branch. There are many kinds of canker and some of them will travel up the branch to the crown and kill the plant.