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Top 10 best indoor plants for incredible fragrance" text over a background of blooming pink roses.

Want to step into your garden and feel like you’re in a perfume commercial? Well I’ve rounded up the 10 best plants for fragrance, because everyone should make time in their life to stop and smell the roses (or the nine other plants I have on this list).

Now let’s break down what I mean by the best fragrances. See some plants don’t give off much of a scent, and then there are some that do, but only for a short period. This is what I’m basing my rating off of:

  • How easy it is to grow.
  • How easy it is to find.
  • If it can be used in multiple ways.
  • Oh, and obviously whether it actually gives off a good amount of fragrance, for a long amount of time.

If you’re new here, hi, I’m Chris. I’ve been working in the horticulture industry for decades, and I own the Hello Hello Nursery, so I know a thing or two. Now I’m not going to bother with a 10-1 countdown, I’m just going to jump right into my favourite one. Let’s get started.

10 of the Most Fragrant Plants

White flowers blooming on a lush green shrub, perfect as top indoor plants.

Coming in first is the Murraya ‘Orange Jessamine’. In my opinion, this is the best option. Why? Because it’s just such a useful and versatile plant. Here are some of the things you can do with Orange Jessamine:

  • Put it on a patio.
  • Put it in a tub.
  • Clip it into a ball, cone, or any shape you want.
  • Have it as a natural bush.
  • Grow it as a medium hedge.
  • Grow it as a specimen in the garden.
  • Have it as a tall screen (about two metres).

Top indoor plants with white star-shaped flowers and green leaves.So this is a plant that is really flexible to your needs in the garden, and I’m not even at the best part. Starting from around late September to early October, it will start to flower and flower and flower. Your Orange Jessamine will be absolutely covered in these exquisite white blossoms. This is where that incredible fragrance comes from. You’ll have these flowers right up until April, when the weather starts to get cool again. That’s a HUGE amount of time. Even when there aren’t flowers, the Orange Jessamine still looks really nice.
So picture this: it’s a warm summer’s night, you’re having a drink in your courtyard, and with every inhale you get this rich floral scent. Heavenly.

Cluster of white jasmine flowers, one of the top indoor plants, with green leaves in the background. Chinese star jasmineMoving on, we have the Trachelospermum ‘Chinese Star Jasmine’. This plant is almost just as useful as your Orange Jessamine. This will start flowering around mid-November and last up until mid-February. So not as long as the Orange Jessamine, but still a decent amount of time. What I love about Chinese Star Jasmine is that its applications are completely different to the Orange Jessamine. You can grow it as a ground cover, or grow it as a climber up a trellis or wall. You could even grow it as a screen if you have the proper structure to hold it up.
A lot of people with double storey houses or small blocks get big areas of shade and some plants don’t grow so well there. But the great thing about Chinese Star Jasmine is that it has no issues growing in deep shade or the hot sun. Also, if you’re allergic to jasmine, you’ll find that the Chinese Star Jasmine is actually okay for you. The reason for this is that in truth, it’s not actually a jasmine. It’s a Trachelospermum, which is an entirely different family of plant.

Cluster of white flowers with pink stems against a dark green foliage background, considered top indoor plants.Now I am going to talk about an actual Jasmine now – Jasminum ‘Common White Jasmine’ to be exact. So your Common Jasmine is a ferocious grower, and it’s one of the fastest growing evergreen hedges. You can grow it on a fence, or up the side of the house, in a pot, or over anything you want. It’ll grow pretty much anywhere. This is a hardy plant that requires very little care or water, and it’s great in shade or sun.
Then in springtime, around late September, it will be covered in these gorgeous pink buds. Next thing, those pink buds start to open, and you get a lovely mix of pink and white blossoms that exude an incredible fragrance. Depending on the weather, you’re going to get beautiful fragrant flowers for four to six weeks. Think about how many perfumes use jasmine, and you could get the pure source right in your backyard.

Cluster of light pink flowers from top indoor plants blooming among green leaves.The Winter Daphne has pink and white flowers that give off this delightful citrusy smell. People are addicted to this smell. I’m addicted to the smell, it’s really quite incredible. Your Winter Daphne will start flowering in early August for about six to seven weeks.
Listen, I’ve heard that many people have issues growing Winter Daphne, but I’m going to let you in on a secret. It needs really good soil – and a lot of it. Also, it likes morning sun and afternoon shade. So what you should do is you get half a wine barrel or some other pot and take the bottom out of it. Then dig a great big hole in the garden and fill it up with potty mix, compost, and good acidic soil. Put your barrel or pot on top and fill that up with top quality potty mix. Aim for about 80cm to a metre of good soil, and your Winter Daphne is going to flourish. All they need is that deep, beautiful soil to move their roots through. Also they love plenty of fertilizer, such as Osmocote. With just a bit of love, your Winter Daphne will grow quickly, grow big and give you a tremendous amount of flowers.

Obviously, I couldn’t leave roses out. But roses are actually pretty tricky, which is why they’re a bit further down on my list. With roses you’ll see on a label that it is beautifully fragrant but when you go to smell it, you can’t really smell anything. So tip for you, go buy your roses in the summer when you can actually see the flower, check the colour, and have a good whiff of it. The problem is too many breeders focus on getting a beautiful looking rose, and don’t focus too much on its scent.
So, I’m going to give you my top three favourite roses that have incredible fragrances:

Those are the roses I’d recommend, but really there’s hundred to choose from. If you’re feeling lost and don’t love these options, just come on down to our store and we can help you out.

A close-up of a cream-colored gardenia flower in bloom, one of the top indoor plants, surrounded by green leaves. Grdenia floridaThe next thing is Gardenia ‘Florida’. There are lots of different Gardenias, and many of them have a lovely scent too. But the thing about Florida is that it flowers for a much longer time. Which means it gives you more fragrance. You can use it as a hedge, a specimen in the garden or put it in a pot plant. If you’re looking to add some pots of nice bushy plants at your front door, then the Gardenia is perfect because it looks great all year round. What Gardenias need is good drainage, good soil, plenty of water, and plenty of fertiliser.

A white magnolia flower in bloom with green leaves from one of the top indoor plants in the background. White Jade Orchid TreeThis is the first tree to come up and it’s considered by some people to be the best perfume in the world. When planted in the garden, Michelia alba flower for ages. For about five months of the year this gorgeous tree will be in bloom. On a warm night your whole backyard will be filled with the most delicious fragrance. They also have a very interesting foliage that is quite luminous. It’s a medium sized tree so should fit perfectly in most gardens.

A vibrant magenta top indoor plant with prominent stamens surrounded by green leaves and budding flowers. Michelia figo CocoNow Michelia figo has the most interesting smell, it’s sweet with a hint of bubble gum. Which sounds a bit crazy, but you should come down when they’re flowering and smell one. It’s really incredible. The Michelia figo flowers for about three months of the year. The flowers aren’t that showy and tend to be hidden in the foliage a bit, but the scent is incredibly strong. It’s a fairly unassuming, little evergreen bush so you wouldn’t expect it. You can use Michelia figo as a hedge that you trim up, grow it in a tub, or grow it as a specimen in the garden.

Close-up of a white magnolia flower in bloom with green leaves in the background, one of the top indoor plants. Magnolia grandifloraHere we got the Magnolia ‘Exmouth’ which are basically dotted with enormous flowers all summer long. Even without flowers, this evergreen tree makes for a beautiful sight with its dark green foliage and brown backs on the leaves. You’ll also find that they grow really well anywhere. So you don’t need to stress about soil or whether it needs to be placed perfectly to get a certain amount of sun or shade. Most importantly, the fragrance that comes from it is so lush, you’ll find yourself stepping outside just to have a big inhale of it.

Close-up of white flowers blooming on a top indoor plant with dew drops. Sweet Box Formal HedgeThe lucky last option – the Sweet Box. Now this is actually a great substitute for the English Box. It does need a bit of Dolomite Lime and plenty of fertiliser to keep it lush and green. But what’s unique about the Sweet Box is that it’s going to start blossoming around now in April and continue on through the winter. With a lot of the other options on this list, we see the opposite happening. It has very fine delicate flowers that give off a refreshing scent. The Sweet Box is also just a beautiful hedge with dark glossy green foliage.

That’s a wrap folks! Here you have the top ten best plants for exceptional fragrances. If you’re interested in having a bit of a sniff test you should come down to Hello Hello. But make sure you come in quick because the weather is starting to turn. With the cold unfortunately comes the (brief) death of all those flowers that are giving us the incredible fragrances. Well, other than the Sweet Box of course.
Until next time,

Feeling inspired to create your own garden, but want some expert advice? Try our one-on-one garden design service with Chris. Together you’ll come up with a selection of plants along with a layout plan that gives you the look you want, as well as being suitable for your local soil and conditions.

get your own tailored modern garden design:

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