The best fragrant flowers to plant for summer bouquets

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The best fragrant flowers to plant for summer bouquets

When one is presented with a bouquet of flowers, it is almost always an instinct to put the nose close to it to inhale its fragrance. It is natural to assume that something that looks good will smell good as well. But this is not always true, even for some of the most beautiful of objects such as flowers. However, when beautiful flowers are coupled with delicious fragrance, the result is a complete delight.

An arrangement of fresh-cut flowers will brighten any space or anyone’s day when given as a gift. When the flowers in the arrangement emit fragrance, this adds comforting and romantic appeal.

Following are some of the most popular cut flowers, which are also prized for their delectable fragrance. When left out in the garden, their exquisite beauty can be enjoyed during the months of summer.


The rose is the perfect symbol for timeless beauty and perfection. It is often presented as a gift to show deep appreciation. In the case of the red rose, it hopes to convey a message of deep affection. On the other hand, when one wants to create an elegant and formal flower arrangement, the rose is always a great choice.

Roses, in general, do best when planted in temperate zones.  Many rose bushes and vines flourish in the garden in growing zones 5 to 9. The best cutting rose varieties are tea roses. They produce single blooms on long stems. They are favorite florist varieties. The “Always and Forever” hybrid tea rose from Jackson and Perkins blooms from early to late summer. It produces 5-inch long-stemmed blooms in red. The flowers have a light classic rose fragrance. The “Double Delight” tea rose can be grown in zones 4 to 10. It produces bicolor blooms in creamy white and strawberry red. Other examples of long-stemmed fragrant roses include Mr. Lincoln, Home and Family, and Christian Dior.



Lavenders are perennial shrubs that produce aromatic spiky flowers, typically in shades of blue to purple. The oil from the flowers is extracted and used in the making of soaps and perfumes. Lavender flowers are also dried and used as a culinary herb. In Provence, France, fields of lavender are planted for commercial use. They are a sight to behold and a popular tourist attraction.

Lavandula angustifolia lavenders are popular cultivated species. Lavender, in general, prefers dry and gravelly soil. Popular varieties of the L. Angustifolia include Munstead, English, Lady, and Hidcote. The Lady and English varieties have true lavender colors, while the Munstead and Hidcote varieties have a deep blue color. These varieties can grow to 18 inches tall. Non-blue-purple varieties include Rosea, which has pink flowers, and Ellagance Ice, which has white flowers. Lavender flowers can be used in fresh and dried flower arrangements. Lavender plants are mostly hardy in zones 6 to 9, but there are slight variations with specific varieties.


Oriental Lily

Oriental lilies are native to Korea and Japan. They are currently popular as wedding flowers. Oriental lilies have large 6-petal flowers which can be as wide as 8 inches across. The flowers are very fragrant and come in beautiful pastel and vibrant colors that include white, yellow, peach, pink, maroon, and red. The flowers are sometimes spotted or edged with contrasting colors. Some have frilly edges. The average height of Oriental lilies can range from 3 to 4 feet. The flowers can last up to 10 ten days in a vase. It is best to harvest the flowers just before they open. When planted in the garden, they require slightly acidic and moist soil. Morning sun exposure is preferred, with sunshade protection in the afternoon. Oriental lily flowers look both exotic and elegant. They are hardy in zones 3-9.



Carnations belong to the Dianthus plant genus. The plants are hardy in zones 6 to 10. They can be planted as annuals where winter is cold. Carnations are popular florist flowers. Their flower stems typically reach 24 inches in height and is topped with double flowers that come in many different colors, including bicolor blooms. The blooms have an enchanting spicy fragrance that isn’t too overpowering. Different flower colors convey different meanings when given as a gift. For example, a deep red carnation signifies deep love, while a light red carnation signifies admiration. A yellow carnation symbolizes disappointment. To avoid sending a non-intended meaning, a multi-color bouquet may be given. Carnation is the birth flower for those who were born in the month of January.



Tuberoses are exotic and elegant white flowers that grow on tall and slender stems, typically reaching about 2 ½ feet. The plants are native to Mexico and are related to the yucca. The plants are propagated from corms. Tuberoses usually bloom in late summer. The flowers which come in single and double types are heavily fragrant. Just one stem is guaranteed to fill an entire average size room with fragrance. The best use for tuberose is in the perfume industry, where the flowers supply the middle notes in perfume. They are a novelty to have in the garden and need really warm weather to flourish. The tuberose corms are not commonly sold in garden centers but can be purchase online at websites like Tennessee Tuberoses and Tuberoses are hardy in zones 9 to 11.

Garden Phlox

Garden phlox are old-time favorite cottage garden plants. Tiny flower clusters grow on tall panicles that can grow to 48 inches tall. The flowers have a baby powder-like fragrance. Flower colors come in purple, white, pink, and lavender.  The “Spinner” variety is pink with white stripes, resembling peppermint candy. The plants are hardy in zones 4 to 8. However, they are known to be susceptible to powdery mildew. New varieties have been developed to be more resistant to the disease. Examples are the “Purple Kiss” and “David” varieties from Garden phlox can be planted in full sun or light shade in rich and well-draining soil. They bloom from July to August.

The plants listed above should give one a good selection of beautiful flowers with a sweet fragrance. They can be left outside to enhance the beauty of the summer garden, or they can be cut to adorn the home; or shared with friends.