Networx

Posted by | Jun 27, 2011

Favorite Fragrant Flowers

Horticulturist Erica Glasener, special to Networx.com and Hometalk.com, offers up advice for cultivating sweet-smelling blooms.

Phlox.  Photo by Erica Glasener.For as long as I can remember, I have been drawn to plants with fragrant flowers and foliage.  The added bonus with growing many of these is the butterflies and hummingbirds that they will attract to your garden.  There are dozens of fragrant flowers including annuals, perennials, trees, shrubs and bulbs that not only look good but smell good too! 

Often the best time to work in the garden during the heat of summer is in the early morning or at the end of the day.  This is also an ideal time to appreciate the perfume of fragrant flowers like lilies, garden phlox, butterfly bush and gardenias.  Depending on which region of the US you garden in, there are dozens of plants that offer beautiful blooms and intoxicating scents. 

Here are a few tips for gardening with fragrant flowers:

1.     Site fragrant flowers where you will be able to appreciate their scents, along paths and walkways, especially  plants like rosemary or thyme that release their scents only if you bruise the leaves or rub against them.

2.     Plan to include aromatic delights for each season.

3.     Groups of fragrant flowers will make more of an impact than individual plants dotted here and there but, sometimes you only need one specimen (plants with strong  fragrances) such as the gardenia, to appreciate its perfume. 

4.     Include a bench or a place to sit and enjoy your fragrant flowers.

5.     Some fragrant flowers, like flowering tobacco and moonflower, wait for early evening to open and release their perfume.  Be sure to locate these where you can best enjoy them. 

6.     Site deciduous shrubs and trees against a background of evergreens to achieve the best effect.

Plants with fragrant flowers and or foliage

Key for season  to appreciate fragrant qualities: W=winter, S=spring, SU=summer and F=fall. Hardiness is indicated except for annuals.

Annuals

Brugmansia 'Charles Grimaldi' (angel's trumpet) -- SU and F

Cestrum nocturnum (night jessamine) -- SU and F

Heliotropum arborescens (heliotrope) -- SU and F

Nicotiana alata (flowering tobacco) -- SU and F

Ipomea alba (moonflower (a vine)) -- SU and F

Salvias (both annual and perennials types) -- SU and F

Perennials

Calamintha nepeta nepeta (calamintha) -- SU and F (Zone 5 to 9)

Lilium species and cultivars (Casa Blanca is white and very fragrant) -- SU (Zone 5 to 8)

Monarda didyma (bee balm) -- SU and F (Zone 4 to 8)

Phlox paniculata (David -- white garden phlox) -- SU (Zone 4 to 8)

Rosmarinus officianalis (rosemary) -- S,SU, F, W  (Zone 6 to 9, depending on the cultivar)

Trachelospermum jasminoides (Madison -- confederate jasmine) (Zone 7 to 10)

 

Shrubs and Trees

Buddleia davidii (butterfly bush) -- SU and F (Zone 5 to 10, depends on cultivar)

Chimonanthus praecox (wintersweet) -- W (Zone 7 to 9)

Clethra alnifolia (sweet pepperbush) -- SU (Zone 4 to 9)

Daphne odora (winter daphne) -- W, S (Zone 7 to 9)

Gardenia jasminoides (gardenia) -- many different cultivars SU and F  (Zone 7-11)

Hamamelis x intermedia (Arnold Promise, Arnold Promise witchhazel) -- W, S (Zone 5 to 9)

Magnolia virginiana var. australis (sweetbay magnolia) -- S and SU (Zone 5 to 10)

Osmanthus fragrans (tea olive) -- F (Zone 7 to 9)

Rosa species and cultivars -- many different selections, hardiness varies

Styrax obassia (fragrant snowbell) -- S, (Zone 7 to 9)

Erica Glasener is a Hometalk - http://www.hometalk.com - writer.  Read more articles like this one - http://www.networx.com/article/favorite-fragrant-flowers - or get help with your home projects on Hometalk.com.

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