What Is A Scent Garden – Tips For Planting A Fragrant Garden

Woman Smelling A Fragrant Garden
(Image credit: David-Prado)

A garden is not just attractive to the eyes; it is truly a feast for all the senses. While many people first see gardens, the second sensation is usually the fragrance. The smell of a garden can be just as delightful as how it looks. Without sacrificing the visual, consider planting a fragrant garden. 

What is a Scent Garden? 

The best garden hits all the senses, and the idea of a scent garden is just as it sounds: choosing and arranging plants to maximize pleasing fragrances. When you walk into a scent garden, you should know immediately, even with eyes closed. 

How to Grow a Scent Garden

There really are no rules when it comes to planting a fragrant garden, but some ideas help. A scent garden can be a free for all; simply choose the plants that smell best to you and use them. Or, you can choose these to make a themed scent garden: 

Rose garden. Roses are among the most fragrant of flowers. Create a rose garden choosing varieties based on scent rather than appearance. 

Relaxation garden. Scent is powerful for triggering emotions. Many garden smells are relaxing. Choose plants that soothe you and create a corner of the garden for sitting and relaxing. 

Night garden. Gardens can be enjoyed at night too. Choose fragrant, night-blooming flowers. 

Seasonal garden. A garden that changes by the season is ordinary, but what if you focused on how fragrances change? You could choose spring flowering trees and shrubs, followed by summer flowers, and fall blooms and trees that smell nice. 

Choosing Scented Garden Plants

The plants you choose for your scented garden will follow your theme or simply be the aromas that call to you. Here are some of the most fragrant options to get you started: 

Roses. It goes without saying that these flowers have a classic, beautiful smell. Some rose varieties smell better than others. 

Other flowers. Roses can’t take all the credit for fragrance. Also try jasmine, lily of the valley, hyacinth, wisteria, freesia, sweet alyssum, and scented geranium. 

Herbs. An herb garden is one of the most scent-laden types of plantings you can create. Every type of herb has its own unique, powerful fragrance, so choose the ones you like the most. 

Flowering trees. Choose Japanese flowering cherry, linden trees, apple, and crabapple, among others, give you sweet, spring scents. 

Fragrant shrubs. Don’t forget the flowering shrubs that also smell sweet, like lilac, butterfly bush, honeysuckle, daphne, and Korean spice viburnum. 

Night fragrance. For a nighttime scent garden grow evening primrose, moon flower, four o’clocks, and flowering tobacco.

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Mary Ellen Ellis

Mary Ellen Ellis has been gardening for over 20 years. With degrees in Chemistry and Biology, Mary Ellen's specialties are flowers, native plants, and herbs.