Scented and aromatic plants - your faves for indoors and outdoors?

Discussion in 'Garden Design and Plant Suggestions' started by ErWe, Nov 18, 2009.

  1. ErWe

    ErWe Member

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    I would like to pick up Dana09 suggestion, and start a discussion about fragrant and aromatic plants - one of the great pleasures of gardening for me.

    One of my personal favorites is Aesculus parviflora, a shrubby chestnut, increasing moderately (at least in my garden) by suckers. In early July it is covered in ephemeral flowers, resembling bottlebrushes. Almost never mentioned in literature is the delicious scent of these, which is wafting quite a distance through the garden.

    Other bonusses: the young unfurling leaves, starting off with a strong coppery tint, then displaying a fine bright green, before attainging their dark green summer colour. In autumn they are a clear yellow.

    Seeds look very much like normal chestnuts, their pod is smooth, a bit velvety.

    Height up to 3m, spread large when really old.
     

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  2. ErWe

    ErWe Member

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  3. 2annbrow

    2annbrow Active Member

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    Re: Scented and aromatic plants - your faves?

    Freesias! Sweet William (pinks) for the clove scent. Corsican mint. Lemon savory. Pineapple sage. western sagebrush. wild sweet anise on a summer night. Fallen pine needles cooking in the sun on a hot day. And above all, the scent of the soil itself, where it's natural and has been undisturbed and clean for years. But my very favorite is the leaves of a tree - don't know what it is, but it grew near water in CA hills: I think 5-lobed leaves, and the backs of them had a brown soft fuzz. At some time I was told it was sycamore.
     
  4. Tobin

    Tobin Active Member

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    Re: Scented and aromatic plants - your faves?

    Salvia clevelandii. YUM. Also love the pineapple sage like Anne. Daphnes are hard to beat. Lavender.
     
  5. thanrose

    thanrose Active Member

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    Re: Scented and aromatic plants - your faves?

    People love or hate citrus in bloom. Haters tend to be a few of the people who actually live near groves. I love them. Fortunella spp. not so much.

    If you have a chance to crush citrus family leaves over a year, you'll note the leaf scent changes with the flowering and fruiting. You'll also note that each distinct fruit's leaf will smell like the fruit. At least that's what I've found.

    I love to run my hands over rosemary and any mint. Love sassafras leaves, and Illicium parviflorum or yellow anise leaves.

    Pine woods in the summer, mmmm.

    Ann, my Platanus occidentalis has a bit of a spicy green scent, but not particularly memorable for me and I'm touching it every day. Also the fine hairs are almost nonexistent at the end of the season, but are noticeable in spring.
     
  6. lorax

    lorax Rising Contributor

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    Re: Scented and aromatic plants - your faves?

    Phragmipedium ecuatoriensis. Hands down, the spicy-sweet scent of the flowers is my favourite in the garden. However, when I have to live in places that these won't grow, I am particularly fond of Cedrella odorata saplings - strongly cedar scented, and Cinnamomum officianale. (cinnamon). I am also particularly fond of the smell of Mango trees.
     
  7. Dana09

    Dana09 Active Member

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    Re: Scented and aromatic plants - your faves?

    Nice that you started this thread whether there is an old one or not as the old is disontinued here.
    I am wowed by the green scarab-like beetle ! on the flower of that chestnut. Great shot of both. Wonderul detail on that bug.
    I hope it is a friendly ornament in your garden ErWe.
    Is the fruit of the shrub edible? The foliage looks like the regular tree sort as it unfolds.
    And can you describe the scent? Is it similar to another plant we know?

    I grow the (Portuguese) so called laurel, which has a nice scent but if there is a lot of it, as in my tree hedge now, it can be overwhelming and I cut away lots of flower buds before they bloom. Never thought I would be doing that when I planted them years ago but the fruits discolour clothing and shoe soles as people walk past toward the house anyway and there are lots of fruits left for the birds on other parts.
    In spring so many of its flowers are just too much scent.
    The gold at far left is my one chestnut tree bought from a boy for 5o cents in a 4 inch pot 20 yrs ago at a farmers' market when I moved here.

    D
     

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  8. Dana09

    Dana09 Active Member

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    Re: Scented and aromatic plants - your faves?

    Scented leaves on a CLEMATIS ANYONE?????
    I read of this one in a book once and didn't catch the name of it but once the leaves are dead they carry a scent.

    Also I noticed one dry summer that when the leaves of the wild pin cherry (?) dried up they had a delightful aroma.

    How many pineapple sages are there?
    This one below, s. elegans, is a variety that has leaves that smell like cooked pineapple but I have grown another variety in the past, that smelled like the raw fruit and did not have red flowers.

    D
     

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  9. joclyn

    joclyn Rising Contributor

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    Re: Scented and aromatic plants - your faves?

    i love my tom pounce lily!! you can smell the beautiful aroma from 20 feet away!
     
  10. togata57

    togata57 Rising Contributor

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    Re: Scented and aromatic plants - your faves?

    Sansevieria; lavender; my chocolate-scented oncidium.
     
  11. The Hollyberry Lady

    The Hollyberry Lady New Member

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    Re: Scented and aromatic plants - your faves?

    Still working on getting the seeds to germinate...


    Desmos Chinensis - Dwarf Ylang Ylang.


    : )
     
  12. ErWe

    ErWe Member

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    Re: Scented and aromatic plants - your faves?

    to the person moving this thread to "conversation" visible only to registered members:

    Could you pls suggest a title for this thread which would enable the moving of it to somewhere e.g. more design related? I had no intention to do small-talk in secluded environs ;-), since scent is feature of plants of more universal interest which need not to be hidden from the public.


    Dana09, i used the search function, it seems there is not thread related to the scented plants, they only pop up with question regarding individual gardens (search for hedge e.g.)

    The bug is the rose beetle (Green Rose Chafer, Cetonia aurata), and, as I have a rather wild garden, we have lots of them adorning (scented) flowers in May to July.
    Portuguese Laurel = Prunus lausitanica? (I know some of the english common names, but far from all, I'll ask quite often for the botanical names to be sure of the plant one is writing about).

    I grow quite a few clematis, but haven't nociticed a scent of their leaves worth mentioning.

    Which Prunus is pin cherry?

    re sages: I'm growing Salvia dorisiana, with extremly sweetly scented leaves. Sadly it wont bloom for me, not enough light in winter, and / or not enough warmth. It has very nice dark pink flowers though. Could have been the one you're mentioning (no red flowers, raw fruit)

    Sanseveria has a wonderful scent, yes. Silly thing wont bloom anymore *sadlooking*.

    But Crassula lycopodioides (see attachment, the diameter of flowers are less than 2 mm) blooms reliably every November, with a strong far reaching honey scent. It stays outside in summer, till the first cold nights, and, as a succulent is happy in full sun with excellent drainage. Growth to about 30cm in height and the same in diameter in some 5 to 8 years.
     

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    Last edited: Nov 21, 2009
  13. Michael F

    Michael F Esteemed Contributor Forums Moderator 10 Years

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    Re: Scented and aromatic plants - your faves?

    Cupressus macnabiana. Very nice spicy-resinous scented foliage. Though it won't be hardy in Vienna.

    Ditto Cistus ladanifer.
     
  14. Dana09

    Dana09 Active Member

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    Re: Scented and aromatic plants - your faves?

    Hi ErWe,
    Thks for info about that crassula. A friend just bought a little one this summer.

    Yes, common names tho I wouldn't mind hearing what they are called far away.
    Sometimes plants also have stories attached as I've read about the Clematis, also known as 'Virgin's Bower' when it was grown as a hedge plant where young maidens were taken by their swains.

    And
    Oleander, which is also a wonderfully scented plant, has a story about it in this book too where soldiers of the French Foreign Legion died when they made bivouac with the branches of oleander in the night, which plant was poison and many soldiers did not arise in the morning.

    Those stories come from an old set of of books simply titled 'FLOWERS' A Guide for For Your Garden, translated from the Italian and revised by Henry Cocker (edited by Michael Sonino) ISBN 0-8109-0127-7 published 1975


    Yes, Portuguese laurel which does not grow in Portugal at all I have been informed, is the lusitanica
    and
    the pin cherry has many names properly called prunus pensylvanica.

    I will become educated yet! ;)

    Thks
    D
     
  15. Daniel Mosquin

    Daniel Mosquin Renowned Contributor UBC Botanical Garden Forums Administrator Forums Moderator 10 Years

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    Re: Scented and aromatic plants - your faves?

    Moved to garden design and plant suggestions, as requested.
     
  16. Dana09

    Dana09 Active Member

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    Here's one that is lightly scented.
    To me it smells like bees wax. One has to seek the scent on this one, it does not drift much on the air.
    From the vine Passiflora Caerulea.

    It has started to grow back again after being winter killed last year and did bloom before the fall turned cold and wet.

    D
     

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  17. growing4it

    growing4it Active Member 10 Years

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    I look forward to the scent of Sarcoccoa ruscifolia and try to incorporate them into my garden designs. I also love the scent of gardenias but in my local climate they are houseplants.
     
  18. ErWe

    ErWe Member

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    Re: Scented and aromatic plants - your faves?

    thx a lot, Daniel!


    That passiflora is scented is new for me, and it might even be hardy here. Could give it a try.

    From the Sarcoccoa tribe I grow S. humilis, which starts to bloom by late January here, if conditions are favourable.

    Another one for the dreaded late wintermonths is Winter Heliotrop, Petasites fragrans, which is just not rampant here. I've it in a contained area, nevertheless. This one needs a midl winter to bloom here, but if it does, the scent is very nice.

    regards
     
  19. Dana09

    Dana09 Active Member

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    Good Morning ErWe,
    You give me more reason to search and stay familiar with my files.
    I just got a new computer that makes the posting much faster, so that is nice.

    I found some Clematis Armandii
    A March bloomer here and with a wonderful light fragrance that does not carry too far but is pleasant outside.
    The blooms do not stay well in water and the plant itself is messy with the petals, stem and seeds dropping all their time, oh and stems from such too.
    It got winter killed here last year but has regrown nicely.
    Growing quite tall it provides some extra cover from the sun at my front door. The center pic is seen from 2nd story window above.

    D
     

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  20. Dana09

    Dana09 Active Member

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    Oh, yes,
    And thanks for the winter heliotrope as I'd never heard of that one.
    The Armandii is evergreen in a mild winter, most years here.

    D
     
  21. ErWe

    ErWe Member

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    middle pic is a clear woah-pic, a very arresting feature.

    I've finished a novel by William Gibson* today, part of it acting in Vancouver. I think the Petasites could be quite opportunistic in your area, it seems to be rather mild in comparsion to that here.

    *spook country
     
  22. Dana09

    Dana09 Active Member

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    Well Erwe,
    It has been a while since anything has been blooming that is scented in my garden though the jasmine nudiflorum has been going strobg all winter and the viburnum threatening to bloom for ages and the buds of the rosemary just opening now, a little late.
    Thanks for the mention of the petasites, something I will look for.

    At last there is one plant I actually smelled while digging a bit one sunny afternoon recently.
    There is one tip of a wallflower blooming right by the house where there is protection. Not a full or large plant as it was somewhat overgrow, the reason I was digging around there when pleasantly surprised by the scent and delighted that only 2-3 open flowers could give this lovely surprise.
     

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    Last edited: Jan 26, 2010
  23. ErWe

    ErWe Member

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    Dana, take care with it in your climate (which, I learn, is similar to the meditarranean, in winter temps at least), it is said to be rampant in milder areas. Perhaps you have to put it in a container, or fence the roots in, or similar.

    We here have absolutely nothing in bloom (-5 to -10 degrees Celius for weeks), except winter jasmine.
     

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