This attractive shrub provides a fragrant backdrop to the Scented Garden.
Comprising approximately 20 shrubby European and Asian species the genus Syringa is most widely acclaimed for the familiar S. vulgaris hybrids, though many of the species produce attractive panicles of tubular, usually scented flowers. In the S. vulgaris hybrids the flower panicles are usually leafless, and are produced from upper axillary buds on the previous season’s growth. These cultivars became popular in the late nineteenth century, thanks particularly to the work of the Lemoine nursery in Nancy, France. ‘Ellen Willmott’ is one such example raised by this renowned breeder in 1903, and bearing long, open trusses of double white flowers. This cultivar commemorates Ellen Willmott of Warley Place, Essex, an influential horticulturist of the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries.