Although the long drought this year has resulted in poor flower production, the recent rains will enhance the huge value to wildlife this plant brings supporting several species many of which are rare or in decline – moths and butterflies to mention two. Strangely this beautiful fragrant entwining native opens its flowers at dusk for pollination – the flower being a high source of energy for dormice. Later in the season its poisonous berries are eaten by bullfinches, thrush and warblers.
Found in woodland and hedges it is quite at home in gardens. On warm summer evenings it releases its high scent which goes back in mythology as the first perfume essence widely available before cultivated flowers came on line.