Forsythia bushes are one of the very first harbingers of spring, bursting into a cheery display of golden-yellow blossoms almost before the snow is all gone. If you are a beekeeper, you might want to consider planting one or two of these shrubs next to your hives, to provide a handy source of nectar just as soon as the bees wake up. The flowers are borne on the previous year's growth, so any pruning should be done immediately after flowering to ensure blooms are produced the following year. Another convincing reason to fit the forsythia into your landscape is the medicinal value of various parts of this plant. Laboratory studies have confirmed the anti-tumor, anti-bacterial, and anti-inflammatory properties of the seed pods as well as the roots. Both the blossoms and the young leaves are edible and can be used for tea and syrups. We have selected Northern Gold as the only variety with sufficient bud hardiness to avoid dieback in northern areas. It was developed in Ottawa from F.ovata, a tough Korean species, and released in 1979. Mature height is 180-240cm (6-8') with a width of 150-200cm (5-7').