by Diane Linsley
One of the great pleasures in life is enjoying the sweet fragrance of a flower in your own garden. There's no perfume in the world to compare with the warm, sun-kissed fragrance created by nature.
Plant fragrant flowers close to paths so you can enjoy them as you walk by. Some plants have fragrant leaves, which are fun to rub. I have a potted herb garden by my front door. I enjoy rubbing the leaves of the herbs while I'm watering them. The herbs come indoors for the winter, where I continue to enjoy them long after the rest of the garden has gone dormant.
"It is a golden maxim to cultivate the garden for the nose, and the eyes will take care of themselves." ~Robert Louis Stevenson
Here's a list of our most fragrant flower seeds.
Fragrant Flowers from Seed
Alyssum -- Masses of tiny, white or purple flowers with a light, sweet fragrance. Easy-to-grow annual. Four O'Clock -- Sweetly fragrant, trumpet-shaped flowers in a range of colors. Gilia tricolor -- Annual wildflower with delicate, lilac and white, trumpet-shaped flowers that smell like chocolate. Easy to grow from seed. Hesperis matronalis -- Sweetly fragrant, violet or white flowers. Self-sowing perennial. Easy to grow from seed. Lunaria annua -- Fragrant, purple flowers followed by showy seed pods. Shade-tolerant biennial. Moonflower Vine (Ipomoea alba) -- Huge, 6" wide, pure white flowers with a sweet fragrance. Night-blooming, annual vine. Tender perennial in zones 8-11. Nicotiana (Flowering Tobacco) -- Fragrant, trumpet-shaped flowers. Annual. Penstemon palmeri -- Large, light pink flowers that smell like grapes. Drought-tolerant, native perennial. Phlox drummondii -- Native annual with lightly fragrant flowers in shades of pink, red, rose, magenta and white. Rudbeckia subtomentosa (Sweet Black-Eyed Susan) -- 3" butter-yellow daisies with dark brown centers. Anise-like fragrance. Sweet Pea -- The powerful fragrance can be smelled from several feet away. Sweet William -- Crimson, pink, white or bicolor flowers with a spicy fragrance. Virginia Stock -- Sweetly fragrant, small flowers in pink, purple and white. Quick to bloom from seed.
Herbs with Fragrant Foliage
Anise Hyssop -- Licorice-mint flavored leaves for tea. Lavender-blue flowers. Basil -- Highly fragrant herb for cooking and ornamental gardens. English Thyme -- Fragrant herb for cooking or potpourri. Pinkish-white flowers. Drought-tolerant perennial. Greek Oregano -- The pizza herb. Yummy fragrance. Spreading perennial. Lavender -- Fragrant flowers and foliage. Good for potpourri. Lemon Balm -- Strong, lemon fragrance. Nice for teas. Has a sedative effect. Easy to grow from seed. Lemon Beebalm -- The crushed leaves have a mild, citrus fragrance. The lavender-pink flowers attract hummingbirds and butterflies. Sage (Salvia officinalis) -- Spicy herb for poultry seasoning. Lavender flowers.