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Plant Details

Sarcococca ruscifolia

Fragrant Sarcococca
Zone: 10a, 10b, 5a, 5b, 6a, 6b, 7a, 7b, 8a, 8b, 9a, 9b
Exposure: Light/Bright Shade
Height: Minimum 3 feet , Maximum 6 feet
Width: Minimum 3 feet , Maximum 5 feet
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Few shrubs reach their peak in the middle of winter, but that is precisely when Sarcococca ruscifolia begins to shine. Tiny white flowers hidden amongst its glossy, dark-green foliage, open to release a delightful perfume of sweet vanilla. The perfume wafts in the winter air from January through February and brings to mind the smells of a Swedish bakery. Following flowering, small scarlet berries appear. This cool season charmer thrives in shade and tolerates dry shade once it is established. Place this shrub near shady entrances to revel in the winter fragrance. It can be used as a single specimen threaded among an evergreen border or planted in drifts to maximize its floral fragrance. It also thrives in woodland settings.

Sweet box grows best in open to deep shade in locations protected from hot afternoon sun. It prefers a rich moist to well-drained soil, but will tolerate sandy locations and clay if the drainage is adequate. Once established it is drought tolerant. It is slow to become established, often taking a couple of years to settle in. Little pruning is needed other than the occasional removal of dead or broken branches. In severe and sudden cold snaps it can defoliate, but it will leaf out in spring.

(Source: Great Plant Picks)

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14 Nurseries Carry This Plant:

Listing Key

Name City/State Email Phone Prod Type Availability
A Rocky Mountain Nursery Independence, OR Email now 503-838-4222 Container: 2
Alpha Nursery Inc. Salem, OR Email now 503-390-1286 Container: 2
Clearwater Growers Ltd. Forest Grove, OR Email now 503-359-7540 Liner: X
Dinsdale Nursery Sherwood, OR Email now 503-925-9292 Container: 1
  • Download Availability List (163 KB)
  • Eshraghi Nursery Hillsboro, OR Email now 503-628-8685 Container: 2
  • Download Availability List (192 KB)
  • Download Availability List (243 KB)
  • Harold M. Miller Landscape Nursery Jefferson, OR Email now 503-399-1599 Container: 1
    Loen Nursery Inc. Woodburn, OR Email now 503-982-6300 Container: 2
    Mahonia Vineyards & Nursery Salem, OR Email now 971-701-1921 Container: 1
  • Availability List
  • Marion Nursery Salem, OR Email now 503-409-4233 Container: X
    P & D Nursery Tualatin, OR Email now 503-638-6366 Container: 4
    Sidhu & Sons Nursery Ltd. Mission, BC Email now 604-826-3537 Container: X Liner: X
    TSW Nursery Sales Inc. Aurora, OR Email now 503-678-4401 Bare Root: X Container: X
    William Dillard Nursery Co. Damascus, OR Email now 503-665-0515 Container: 1
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  • Youngblood Nursery Inc. Salem, OR Email now 503-390-8619 Container: 3