Scented plants for April

I have really enjoyed the scented plants in the garden during this spell of warm weather. 

Walking around the garden there are some lovely scented plants to enjoy this month. The first image left is of Wallflowers, latin name Erysimum which are coming into flower towards mid April onwards. If you haven’t grown wallflowers before they are really worth while because their scent is one of the best in the garden. If you are growing for scent, pick your variety carefully. There are English and Siberian wallfowers and the English ones, latin name  Erysimum cheiri, I think have the better scent and tend to flower earlier.  These are the biennuial varieties, the perennial variety one of the most popular of which is ‘Bowles Mauve’ is a reliable performer and a lovely mauve as it’s name suggests, but nothing like the scent of the Erysimum cheiri. This is one of the times that latin names are useful. The term “Wallflower” covers a lot of different plants whereas if you buy Erysimum cheiri, you get a precise variety with scent.

  Wallflowers team up well with Tulips  and come in a variety of colours red, yellow, orange,  salmon, mauve  crimson all shades. They are easy to grow but short lived and need regular replacement. The good news is that Wallflowers bloom for a long period and will grow in quite poor soil as long as drainage is reasonable and with plenty of sun.

Also adding scent to the garden is the Viburnum x carlcephalum, centre image left,  a deciduous form of Viburnum on which the flowers precede the leaves. It’s an easy to grow shrub, with attractive well scented rounded balls of flower which will withstand being picked and brought inside. It will tolerate semi shade  and is quite vigorous growing to around 3.5m (11ft) . There are several different types of Viburnum which are easy to grow shrubs.

Amongst the scented plants it is easy to overlook the humble Daffodil or Narcissus,but there are many scented varieties which are lovely and have strong scent. Walking around the garden I could really catch the scent on the breeze and Daffodils are easily combined with another spring favourite, the Hyacinth which has merit for its strong almost electric blue and lovely scent.  Both daffodils and Hyacinth are spring flowering  bulbs planted in the Autumn which will return reliably year after year, squirrels and mice permitting.

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