Always Fragrant Tea Olive. We have had several of our Asian customers who have been asking us for this cultivar for years. I was able to locate it in the possession of one of our customers, Louis Truett, in Texas. Louis was able to send me some scion wood during the winter a couple of years back, and I was able to graft it on some of our other Osmanthus fragrans selections. From the new growth on these plants we were able to root this selection and have it on its own roots. In the monograph on the species from China, AN ILLUSTRATED MONOGRAPH OF THE SWEET OSMANTHUS CULTIVARS IN CHINA, the cultivar name 'Rixiang Gui' translates from Chinese to "always fragrant" in English. One of our loyal customers gave me this information concerning the meaning of the cultivar name 'Rixiang Gui': Rixiang Gui:
Daily (Ri) fragrant (Xiang) Osmanthus (gui), referring to the long-lasting flowering season that one may enjoy the fragrance almost daily.
I gave one of the grafted plants to one of our employees to plant in her garden, and she commented to me that the only month for which she had not observed flowers was August. So maybe the "always" in the name refers more to its long flowering period than it does to its fragrance, even though the fragrance is exquisite. So I think that the above translation bears this out. We have an expression here in the Deep South that our Fragrant Tea Olives flower in every month with an "r" in it. But this cultivar might make this old saying obsolete.
Check out our Osmanthus Care Guide.