A landscape brimming with gorgeous blooms and luscious foliage is something that anyone can appreciate. While the perfect image is something all gardeners strive for, a garden should appeal to all of your senses. Transform your collection of beautiful plants into a true garden experience with the delightful scents of some of the most fragrant plants. These sweet, nectar-filled flowers will also bring about the comforting sounds of nature, as they attract pollinators like chirping birds and buzzing bees. Find some inspiration from these top 10 scented garden plants that look AND smell great!
There’s little that can match the simple beauty of lavender fields, a sea of delicate, purple racemes that emit a strong, floral scent. Both the tiny, upright flowers and the gorgeous gray-green foliage are responsible for its aroma, which is a popular choice for scented soaps and beauty products. Aside from its iconic purple color, this popular herb can also display shades of creamy white, pale pink, violet-blue, and soft yellow. A hardy, woody perennial, lavender will flourish in direct sun and dry soils.
Lilac Bushes & Trees
These ultra-fragrant clusters of tiny blossoms are wildly popular. The moment those buds open, you’ll definitely take notice, because their intense scent permeates throughout the air. We carry loads of different lilac varieties that all boast different aromas and aesthetic qualities. Our dwarf Korean lilac bushes can grow up to 6 feet tall and 7 feet wide, and every May we excitedly anticipate when their tiny purple buds all burst open into fluffy lavender bunches of blooms, seemingly overnight! Our James MacFarlane lilacs are particularly beautiful, with their bright magenta buds that open to reveal delicate pink petals that are quite popular among butterflies and other pollinators. Monge lilacs have gorgeous jewel-toned reddish purple blossoms that will last up to 4 weeks. An especially distinct lilac variety, the Ivory Silk Japanese Tree, has a slim trunk and thick, bushy foliage with delicate cream flowers that smell just as lovely as they look.
This lovely flowering tree has the most peculiar blossoms– but that doesn’t make them any less beautiful! They come by their name honestly, with their shaggy, stringy ivory petals that dance in the breeze. This moderately sized ornamental tree will reach heights of around 20-25 feet at maturity, and will do best in full sun with regular watering, at least once per week.
The name of this flowering shrub might have you fooled into looking for some apricot-colored blooms or some sort of fruit imposters, but that’s not what you’ll find! Mock orange is actually named for its refreshing, citrusy scent rather than its color. The blooms of this perennial plants are actually white in color, similar to those found on lemon and orange trees. Mock oranges are easy-going shrubs that grow in full sun to partial shade and moist, well-drained soils.
Roses didn’t earn the label of America’s favorite flower without having some title-winning scent on their side! While not all roses are super fragrant, others are intoxicating. There’s a large spectrum of scents that roses can emit, ranging from delightfully floral, to sweet and fruity, and some are even outright unpleasant. Rose shrubs enjoy ample sunshine and rich, well-drained soil. Keep them well-watered to enjoy these classic flowers all season long.
While many lilies are known to be fragrant, none can compare to the perfume of asiatic lilies. While there are several different varieties of asiatic lilies, they usually tend to bloom earlier than other lilies. Plant them in full sun to light shade and well-draining, loamy soil. Keep the ground evenly moist and amend it to an acidic pH if possible. A little fertilizer will go a long way with asiatic lilies, but don’t use too much or you’ll end up with a plant with thick, lush foliage but very few blossoms.
Lily of the Valley
Another scented lily — though not actually a true lily, this elegant groundcover plant is best known for its dainty, downward facing flowers. A true bell-shaped bloom, lily of the valley flowers are usually pure white in color, but sometimes display stunning shades of pale pink. Don’t be fooled by their subtle presence, these flowers add a strong floral scent to your spring garden. Lily of the valley is an adaptable plant, flourishing in a variety of growing conditions.
Korean Spice Viburnum
Viburnums are the triple threat of fragrant shrubs. They provide many elements of interest to your garden, with gorgeous clusters of fragrant flowers, attractive foliage, and showy ornamental berries. Korean Spice viburnums are especially known for their characteristic aroma, a mixture between sweet and spicy. These flowers bring a shade of blush to your garden with their rosy buds and white to pale pink blooms. Viburnums don’t like wet feet, so grow them in evenly moist, but well-drained conditions!
Stopping to smell the roses (or any other flower) is a nice idea, but a little pointless if they don’t actually smell. A garden full of these fragrant favorites will contribute to a beautiful landscape with an overall warm and welcoming appeal!