There’s no better natural air freshener than scented plants. After all, so many fragrances are based on plants and flowers, why not cut out the middleman and go straight to the source!?
We’ve put together a list of ten of the most fragrant plants to help you get your collection started, along with some tips to care for them so you don’t need to worry if you’re not the greenest fingered.
1. Lemon tree (Citrus Limon)
Lemon trees are one of our favourite scented plants to decorate your interiors with. They’re hardy little trees, making them great for beginner plant parents, and they retain their foliage all year round so they’re always a beautiful feature. Citrus trees are one of the most fragrant plants you will come across. Lemon blossom has a glorious citrus smell with lemon undertones and a sweet floral fragrance to top it off!
When your lemon plant is young, try to remember to water it once or twice per week but this decreases as your plant matures. Keep your lemon tree in a bright sunny spot that provides lots of indirect sunlight and is away from draughts.
2. French Lavender (Lavandula x intermedia ‘Provence’)
Lavender is one of the most recognisable scents in the world, so it makes sense that a lavender plant features on our list of most fragrant plants! The scent of lavender is almost synonymous with relaxation, so adding one of these lovely little plants to your home will make it that bit more ‘zen’.
Lavender plants need lots of bright and direct sunlight, so they’re happiest in a south-facing window if possible. These gloriously scented plants need lots of water in their younger days so check on them a couple of times a week. However, they become very drought tolerant as they age and should be kept in well-draining soil to prevent root rot. During the summer seasons, lavenders will prefer to be left outdoors to soak in the summer rays. Also, the bees love them - so please their little dancing feet so they can have a feast!
3. Dendrobium 'Kumiko' (Dendrobium Nobile 'Kumiko')
This gorgeous plant is often nicknamed the bamboo orchid because of its tall thick stems. This sensational scented plant has a beautifully sweet scent that comes from its pretty pink and yellow bloom that covers its stems.
Keep these beautiful scented plants out of direct sunlight because their leaves are very susceptible to burning, so a west-facing window is just perfect. Blooms will last around 6-8 weeks and then the best way to encourage re-blooming is to provide a change in temperature. In the growing season, check your bamboo orchid every 5 days and water if the soil feels dry. During the dormant winter months, water sparingly but keep the soil slightly damp.
4. Arabian Jasmine
Jasmine plants can be some of the most fragrant scented plants around, and the Arabian jasmine is no exception! Their divine little white flowers have a light, fruity vanilla-esque scent that will fill any room that you keep them in.
Jasmine can be a bit of a fussy lady, so they are better suited to slightly more green-fingered homes. Jasmine plants prefer humid conditions, so it’s important to keep the soil slightly moist by watering at least once a week. Remember to feed your jasmine once a month during the growing season and try to provide her with a minimum of 6-8 hours of sunlight per day.
5. Geranium (Pelargonium)
The geranium is a quintessential plant that you probably first heard of when you were a child. They come in a whole range of colours and aromas, making them an ideal choice if you are looking for some scented plants to keep indoors.
Geraniums are super easy to look after when you know how to, so, here are our top tips to get the very most from these gorgeous ladies:
- Try to keep the soil of your geranium moist, so check on her every few days to make sure the soil hasn’t dried out
- Apply a fertiliser every 4-6 weeks during the growing season
- Keep them in a place with lots of light, around 6-8 hours of sunlight is excellent (they will tolerate less when that’s not possible but will thrive the most in well-lit areas)
6. Dendrobium 'Thailand Black' (Dendrobium sa-nook)
The Dendrobium ‘Thailand Black’ is a stunning orchid with distinctive deep burgundy/purple flowers and an almost black centre. These beauties are also nicknamed bamboo orchids because of their central stalks that are similar to the Dendrobium ‘Kumiko’.
These pretty purple orchids make great scented plants because they have a light and sweet aroma that add a delicate fragrance to your home. Keep your Thailand blackout of direct sunlight, they need lots of bright indirect light and like all orchids, they need to detect a change in temperature to reb-loom. Check the soil every 5 days during the growing season, to make sure that it is kept constantly damp, but water sparingly in the colder dormant months.
7. Mint (Mentha)
If you’re not super into flowering plants but you want a few scented plants for your home, then growing a fragrant herb like mint can be the perfect compromise. There isn’t a fresher aroma around than mint and you can harvest it every so often to make mojitos or a lovely mint tea.
Even better is the fact that it’s extremely easy to grow and can be kept in either bright sunny spots or in partial shade. Keep your mint plant ideally in moist well-draining soil checking every few days and watering if the soil feels dry.
8. Calamondin Orange 'Variegated’ (Citrus x citrofortunella mitis 'Variegata')
As we said, citrus plants are some of the most fragrant plants you can find, and this one is a real showstopper! It has striking cream and green variegated leaves that will make an eye-catching addition to any room, and before they produce orange fruit they have charming white flowers that emit a light orange scent.
To keep these scented plants (or perhaps we should say trees) happy indoors they like lots of bright sunlight- a south-facing window is perfect for the job! Your orange-scented plant is happiest in moist soil so check on them every 5-7 days during the summer growing months, watering when the top 5 cm goes dry. During the cooler winter months when the plant goes dormant, you can decrease this to every 7-10 (depending on how warm/cold your home gets).
9. Gardenia (Gardenia jasminoides)
Gardenias are extremely popular scented plants because they have a powerful fragrance and stunning waxy white flowers. Their aroma is slightly woody, floral and fresh, which is why gardenia is a popular ingredient in perfumes and candles.
However, gardenias can be quite demanding, so you need to take extra care and be ready to dote on your new princess. These popular fragrant flowers need weekly watering and prefer a highly humid environment, so a daily misting would help to keep them happy. Make sure that your gardenia gets at least 6-8 hours of sunlight every day by keeping her on a sunny windowsill.
10. Purple Bellflower 'Ambella' (Campanula 'Ambella')
Ok, so the Purple Bellflower ‘Ambella’ is generally more of an outdoor plant because they are loved by bees, which makes them great for the environment. If you’re lucky enough to have a balcony, check out our Bumblebee Balcony Box which is perfect for helping bees out with pollination.
However, you can also keep these lovely little plants inside too and they have a beautifully delicate floral fragrance. They’re very undemanding scented plants and can live in brighter spots or partially shaded areas, and just need a weekly watering from you to keep them in tip-top condition. Why not try different combinations of these beautiful little bellflowers to mix things up around your home?
Let's sum up!
Hopefully, now you are feeling inspired to try out one of these lovely, scented plants to keep your home smelling fragrant. Just follow our top care tips and you’ll be the perfect plant parent to one of the most fragrant plants in no time.