Fragrant Plants: Landscaping for Aroma
Spring and summer are the time of year most of us focus on gardening and creating beautiful landscapes for our homes. Vibrant colors and sculptural plants are pleasing to the eye, but don’t forget to incorporate fragrant plants into your landscaping, so that you can landscape for aroma as well as visual impact. There are a number of great-smelling fragrant plants to consider for your garden.
Pineapple sage (salvia elegans) is an herb that may be considered a perennial, meaning it comes back every year, or an annual depending on what type of climate you live in. The leaves of the plant look much like those of a traditional garden sage plant, but they produce a wonderful pineapple fragrance.
Pineapple sage can be grown in containers or in the ground and requires full sun. The plant can grow to be 3-4 feet tall, and produces vibrant red flowers at the end of summer and early fall. The leaves of the plant are edible, and can be crushed an added fresh to impart flavor to beverages.
Lavender (lavandula) is another popular fragrant plant. It comes in several varieties. It is known for its spiky purple-blue flowers and strong fragrance. English lavender is the variety most commonly used in gardening. Lavender can either be perennial or annual, depending on the variety and type of climate.
Lavender is versatile in the garden and can be planted in containers or in the ground. All varieties of lavender prefer full sun and require excellent soil drainage. Dampness and overly wet conditions may cause disease in lavender plants.
Flowers of the lavender plant are often used in flower arrangements, both fresh and dried. The leaves are often dried for culinary uses, like tea, and its oil is harvested for use in aromatherapy. It is an extremely versatile plant that has many uses.
Sweet Alyssum Flowers
Sweet alyssum (lobularia maritima) is a delicate flowering plant with small, lacy flowers. It comes in many colors, including white, pink, pale purple, and apricot. The flowers have a strong sweet aroma.
Sweet alyssum is an annual plant, and it requires full sun to thrive. The plants grow to be 6-8 inches tall and are very well suited for use as border plants in the landscape. They may also be grown in containers and in combination with other plants. Sweet alyssum is a relatively easy plant to grow and maintain. It requires soil with good drainage and daily watering in the warmer days of summer.
In short, any of these fragrant plants are beautiful additions when landscaping for aroma. Plant them near doors and windows where breezes can bring their fragrances indoors. Visit your local garden center or seed supplier to learn about these and other aromatic plants for your home.