Garden Bed Companions
If you're redesigning a bed or border and need some sage advice, Take Two Plants: The Gardener's Complete Guide to Companion Planting, by Nicola Ferguson (Contemporary Books, 1998; $28) offers great suggestions along with photos of the best plant combinations. After reading this book you'll be armed with all the facts, and will be able to design and enjoy a spectacular new garden bed!
Favorite or New Plant
One of the best things about winter is the fragrance of daphne in flower. Winter daphne (Daphne odora) produces strongly fragrant clusters of pink flowers at the ends of its branches. It doesn't take many daphne flowers to fill a room with a sweet, almost citrusy fragrance. But daphne can be tricky to grow. It's hardy in USDA zones 7 to 9 but demands perfect drainage and a cool, sheltered spot. It can also grow in part shade. If the right growing conditions are provided, it will develop into a shrub 3 to 4 feet tall and wide. Light pruning after flowering has finished will prevent the plant from becoming woody.