Forsythia viridissima - green forsythia


Green forsythia was among the first of the forsythias to have been brought to Europe. The Scottish botanist and plant hunter Robert Fortune discovered it in eastern China, first in the garden of a mandarin and later in the nearby mountains, where it grows wild along rivers and streams. In Europe it was crossed with weeping forsythia (F. suspensa) to produce the handsomely flowered border forsythia, F. x intermedia.

Forsythia ovata - Korean forsythia


Early in the Finnish spring, i.e. around April-May, small yellow star-shaped flowers open on Korean forsythia shrubs, on the previous season’s growth or at the base of the leaves. After flowering is over, the shrub can be recognised by its leaves and habit: the leaves are dark green, broadly oval and bluntly pointed; the habit is broad, with curving shoots and root suckers.

Forsythia mandshurica


The forsythias attract deserved attention when they flower brilliantly in spring. In addition to the old favourites, the Korean forsythia (F. ovata) and the variety F. ‘Northern Gold’, the extremely promising F. mandshurica deserves attention. It is native to a small area of north-east China and has held elite plant status in Sweden for years, while in America it is considered one of the hardiest of the genus. It has long been grown in Finland, too, but has been limited to a few collections.