Bulbs with scent & sass

There are plenty of bulbs which of­fer both flower power and scent-sa­tional fra­grance.

NZ Gardener - 365 Days of Flowers - - Fragrant Flowers -

If you want spring bulbs plus scent, there are two that stand out: hy­acinths and ‘Er­licheer’ daffs. But many other daffs are fra­grant too. Try these Long Cups: ‘Carl­ton’, ‘Louise de Coligny’; or these dou­bles: ‘Bridal Crown’, ‘Cal­gary’, ‘Cheer­ful­ness’. Or try these bulbs be­low.


Famed for its sweet per­fume, Con­va­l­laria ma­jalis grows in clumps in fer­tile, hu­mus-rich, moist soil in shade. Its pure white bells are pro­duced on 20cm high stems in spring. This plant grows best in cold cli­mates, nat­u­ral­is­ing un­der trees. Plant in au­tumn.


Best known for their bold, trum­pet-like blooms, some of the newer hy­brids also have a sub­tle fra­grance. When plant­ing, the nose of the bulb should be above the con­tainer's rim with its shoul­ders pro­trud­ing above the soil sur­face. Po­si­tion in­doors in a light, warm spot.


These small beau­ties are one of the first spring flow­ers to ap­pear. They pro­duce 3-4 flow­ers per bulb and grow best in cooler cli­mates. In warmer ar­eas, grow in a cool spot and plant deeper and later in the sea­son. Once in flower, bring in­doors to en­joy.


Make a de­lec­ta­ble air fresh­ener or sim­ple eau de toi­lette with the highly fra­grant petals of freesias. Bri­tish site fun­ny­howflow­ers­dothat.co.uk shows us how it's done.

You need: spray-free strongly scented freesias • boil­ing water • 2 bowls that are easy to pour • cof­fee fil­ter or muslin cloth • at­trac­tive glass bot­tle for stor­ing the freesia water in, prefer­ably with an atomiser • a la­bel Re­move petals from flow­er­head, cut into small pieces and place in one of the bowls. Pour over boil­ing water and en­sure petals re­main sub­merged. Leave to stand for at least half an hour. Pour through the cof­fee fil­ter into the other bowl. Squeeze fil­ter to re­move re­main­ing liq­uid from petals. De­cant the per­fume into the glass bot­tle and la­bel.

For long-last­ing blooms, pick freesias when the first flower is open and two other flow­ers are show­ing colour.


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