Imagine walking through your garden and being enveloped in the most amazing fragrances. Sounds pretty great, right? Well, that dream can become a reality with just a few strategically placed plants! Here are some of the best plants with scented leaves that will make your garden smell incredible.
Bayberry (Myrica pensylvanica)
Bayberry is a shrubby plant that typically grows to be between 3 and 6 feet tall. The leaves of the bayberry plant are dark green and waxy in appearance. When the leaves are crushed, they release a potent, spicy scent. Bayberry is native to North America and can be found in woodlands, bogs, and other damp areas.
Bee Balm (Monarda spp.)
Bee balm is a member of the mint family and has scented leaves that smell similar to lemon verbena. Bee balm plants can grow to be between 2 and 4 feet tall and have colorful flowers that attract bees and other pollinators. Bee balm is native to North America and prefers to grow in full sun.
Catmint (Nepeta spp.)
Catmint is a member of the mint family and has scented leaves that smell like a mixture of mint and lemon. Catmint plants can grow to be between 1 and 3 feet tall and have blue or purple flowers that bloom from early summer to fall. Catmint is native to Europe and Asia but can also be found in North America.
Creeping Thyme (Thymus spp.)
Creeping thyme is a low-growing plant that only reaches heights of 6 inches. The leaves of the creeping thyme plant are tiny and green in color. When the leaves are crushed, they release a strong scent that is reminiscent of oregano or thyme. Creeping thyme is native to Europe but can also be found in North America.
Hemlock (Tsuga canadensis)
Hemlock is a coniferous tree that can grow to be between 50 and 75 feet tall. The needles of the hemlock tree are soft and green in color with white stripes on the underside. Hemlock needles have a citrusy scent when they are crushed. Hemlock is native to North America and can be found in forests from coast to coast.
Lantana (Lantana camara)
With its beautiful blooms in shades of yellow, orange, pink, and purple, Lantana is a popular choice for gardens. But did you know that its leaves are also incredibly fragrant? When crushed, Lantana leaves release a spicy-sweet scent that is simply heavenly.
English Lavender (Lavandula angustifolia)
There’s a reason lavender is one of the most popular fragrances in the world—it smells absolutely amazing! And what’s even better is that you can enjoy that fabulous fragrance right in your own backyard with English Lavender. Just brush up against the leaves and inhale deeply to enjoy its intoxicating scent.
Russian Sage (Salvia yangii)
Russian Sage is a stunning plant with silvery-green leaves and delicate blue flowers. But it’s not just its looks that make it special—its leaves also give off a lovely minty fragrance when crushed. Add a few of these to your garden and enjoy the refreshing scent all summer long!
Sweet Woodruff (Galium odoratum)
Sweet Woodruff is a charming little plant with evergreen leaves and tiny white flowers. It’s often used as ground cover or in shady areas since it doesn’t require a lot of sun to thrive. And its leafy goodness doesn’t just stop at its looks—when crushed, Sweet Woodruff leaves release a sweet vanilla fragrance that is simply delightful.
Tansy (Tanacetum vulgare)
Tansy is an aromatic herb with fern-like leaves and small yellow flowers. It has been used for centuries in traditional medicine and as an insecticide. But did you know that its leaves also give off a sweet almond-like fragrance when crushed? Add a few of these to your garden borders and enjoy their lovely scent all season long!
Tricolor Sage (Salvia officinalis ‘Tricolor’)
This herb is a culinary sage that’s commonly used instuffing recipes. But did you know that it’s also beautiful in the garden? The leaves are a pretty trio of colors: green, white, and purple. Plus, they have a lovely citrusy scent that’s perfect for summertime.
Wormwood (Artemisia spp.)
Wormwood is a fragrant herb that’s often used in absinthe. It has pretty silver-grey leaves and produces small yellow flowers. This plant is also said to have some medicinal properties and can be used as an insect repellent. Just be careful when handling it, as the oils can irritate your skin.
Yarrow (Achillea millefolium)
Yarrow is a beautiful flowering plant that produces clusters of tiny white flowers. The leaves have a strong, earthy scent that’s perfect for filling up your garden with some delightful smells. Yarrow is also said to have some calming effects, so it’s the perfect plant to add to your garden if you’re looking to create a serene space.