There's nothing better than smelling a sweet,
fragrant flower in the home or office. During winter, especially,
when outdoor gardens are but a memory, it's a pleasure to be indoors
enjoying the fragrance of these indoor plants. There are many
different indoor plants with fragrant blooms and I can't think of
anything better than standing inside by the window sniffing their
fragrant blooms while a snow storm rages outside.
Some of the fragrant indoor plants throw their
scent, in effect becoming a natural air freshener, while others
invite you to stick your nose right into their blooms to enjoy their
wonderful bouquet. There's something about smelling a fragrant flower
that makes you feel good. Click on a plant below to order it from
Pernell Gerver's Online Store.
of my favorite house plants for fragrance is fragrant
olive. It's a shrubby plant that has oblong, glossy,
almost-leathery, leaves. It bears tiny, creamy-white flowers that in
themselves are nearly insignificant and easy to overlook, unless you
happen to smell them. They have a sweet fragrance that to me
resembles apricots. It's amazing how strong their fragrance is
considering how tiny they are. Each flower is only about a quarter of
an inch long and wide. They are borne in small clusters in the leaf
axils as well as all along its woody stems, even on bare branches. It
blooms all year long.
"The Best Fragrant Indoor Plants for the Home
Workshop with Organic Lawn and Garden Products Sale
18, 7 p.m., Asnuntuck Community College L.R.C. conference room, 170
Elm Street (Route 220), Enfield, CT
19, 7 p.m., Kiley Middle School auditorium, 180 Cooley Street,
21, 3 p.m., Historic Northampton Museum Parsons House, 58 Bridge
Street, Northampton, MA
Free and open to the public
For more info.:
Click here to read Pernell
Gerver's Gardening Workshop Series schedule and to get directions
from your location to any of the locations listed above.
gardenia is an easy-to-grow relative of gardenia that blooms
reliably in the home, blooming almost continuously all year long with
no extra effort. It bears small, star-shaped flowers that are pink in
bud and open creamy white. The flowers are carried in clusters all up
and down its stems and even the smallest stem will have a few flowers
on it. There are dozens and dozens of flowers in bloom at any one
time and their fragrance is wonderful, very similar to gardenia,
albeit a little more subtle. The fragrance easily carries on the
breeze, perfuming a room. It's a shrubby plant that looks similar to
gardenia, but on a smaller scale. It has short, slender leaves that
are carried on woody stems. It rarely grows larger than a couple of
feet high and wide, making a good choice for even a small windowsill
garden. Not a fussy plant, African gardenia
can be grown just about anywhere in the home - in sunny or shady
window, in cool or warm temperatures, and in low or high humidity.
jasmine is another favorite fragrant house plant of mine.
It's a vining plant that has slender stems that carry segmented
leaves. In mid winter it bears large clusters of star-shaped flowers.
The flowers are pink in bud and unfurl pure white. Their fragrance is
sweet with a hint of spice and it's used in the perfume industry. The
fragrance easily perfumes a room and you'll smell this plant before
you see it. The flower clusters are long lasting and continue to
bloom for many weeks right in the middle of winter.
is an old-fashioned flower that's been grown for many generations.
It was popular during Victorian times and it's still a favorite of
indoor and outdoor gardeners. It bears large umbels of flowers that
stand atop its foliage. It's always in bloom. There are both white
and purple varieties of heliotrope. Purple
heliotrope smells like cherry pie and white
heliotrope has a fragrance like baby powder. It's said that
our sense of smell is the strongest at evoking memories and that's
certainly true. Whenever I smell white
heliotrope, I'm reminded of a conversation I had with the
late John Quill, the former longtime local TV weatherman. In one of
my TV segments I talked about fragrant house plants and had brought
to the studio with me examples of each and what each plant smelled
like. Because white heliotrope
smells like baby powder, I had baby powder there in front of the
plant to help describe its fragrance. As John was walking around the
studio in his daily exercise routine, he noticed my display. I had
him smell the white heliotrope
and he swore I had poured the baby powder on it. To this day I'm not
sure if I convinced him that I had not! Unfortunately, modern
varieties of heliotrope have no fragrance, but I've kept both of
these fragrant white and purple varieties going for years and years.