A Primer on Sweet-Smelling Gardens

In designing a garden, the following design elements should be carefully considered: color, texture, style and fragrance. Let’s discuss the last element. After all, what’s a garden without the scent of flowers and plants? For some Salt Lake City landscaping experts, an odorless garden is no better than having plastic or silk flowers.

Aromatic flowers and plants give your garden an added personality, a certain kind of charm. It draws not just you and your loved ones, but also beautiful birds, butterflies and other insects into your garden. Can you imagine the appeal of opening your windows and enjoying the scented breeze coming from your garden? Another plus to adding aromatic Utah shrubs and herbs is that you can actually use these in the kitchen and even as homemade medicines.

Utah landscaping specialists know the importance of choosing aromatic foliage and flowers.

Here are some tips to help you create your sweet-smelling garden:
The nose knows. Follow your own sense of smell. It’s a good idea to give each flower or foliage a “sniff test” to determine whether it’s a scent you want. Though a rose by any other name would smell as fragrant, a certain scented plant may not be as pleasing to you as it is for others.
Foliage vs. flowers. The difference between the two is that flowers exude their fragrance naturally while aromatic foliage should be touched or crushed to bring out their fragrance. Thus, foliage should be placed where you can pick a few leaves and rub it to bring out its scent. These can also be placed near the gate (so that the gate brushes on the plant as it is being opened), beside a water feature such as a pond (where birds and other animals can brush on it on their way to the water) or between the pavers (so people can step on these and crush them while they walk).
Check your climate. Some aromatic shrubs and flowers only grow well (and smell good) in certain climate conditions. Scents intensify as the heat does, so check if one scent (which smelled great for you in winter) won’t seem too overpowering in the summer time.
Check if you or your loved ones are allergic. Do the same for neighbors who may be similarly affected. Some flowers (such as honeysuckle, chrysanthemums, chamomile or jasmine) may bring out the sneezes and watery eyes in some individuals.

Here are some choices of fragrant flowers and plants you can add to your garden:
– Freesia. These colorful flowers exude a distinctively sweet strawberry-like smell. The scent is often described as fresh, with a zing.
– Gardenia. This has a sweet, yet strong scent.
– Lilac. These strongly scented flowers are a good attraction for bees. The lilac plant either grows into small-sized trees or small shrubs.
– Magnolia. These white (or sometimes pink) flowers grow from trees. Magnolias bring an alluring scent during warm, damp days.
– Citrus. This has a bright, zesty smell. Citrus trees include lemon, orange and cumquat.
– Sweet pea. These come in purple, white, pink, red or magenta and exude a sensuous fragrance.
– Lily-of-the-valley. These bell-shaped blooms usually are available in the spring and radiate a sweet aroma.
– Flowers that exude their scent late in the day. These include the four-o-clock and the moonflower, which bloom and open in the late afternoons and at night.
– Chamomile. This provides a soothing scent.
– Lavender. This is another soothing scent.
– Anise hyssop. This has an attractive licorice scent.
– Geraniums. These are good mimics of popular scents such as lemon, apple, mint, cinnamon, strawberry, rose or lime.