Festooned in small fragrant flowers in the coldest months of the year, this is a group of evergreen, shade tolerant plants that will grow in acid or alkaline soils. Sarcococca is a member of the box family (Buxaceae) and its species tend to be small or medium shrubs. The curious looking botanical name Sarcococca refers to its fruit, coming from the Greek sarx meaning flesh and kokkos meaning berry. The fruit is attractive, colouring from red to black as it matures. With its scented blooms, the English common name is sweet box or Christmas box, due to its flowering season.
As already mentioned, the sweet box is a very accepting plant when it comes to position and soil. It will certainly thank you for a rich soil but can cope in sun or shade. Undemanding and easy to look after, if they need any cosmetic pruning, do so after flowering. Our shrub expert Ann Wendik-Byfield has gathered her favourites for your delectation!