5 Great-Smelling Houseplants to Add to Your Home
Give your scented candles a rest and let these wonderfully fragrant houseplants take over.
The biggest factor to worry about when choosing an aromatic indoor plant is adequate light. Indoor plants with strong-smelling blooms do better when they receive more light. Here are five fragrant plant varieties, along with their care requirements:
1. Orange Jessamine
While orange jessamine is not a citrus, it does have beautifully fragrant blossoms and responds quite well to pruning to maintain its compact size. Be sure to find a spot with full sun for your orange jessamine and water it consistently, letting it dry out between waterings. To optimize health, find a balanced fertilizer — preferably one that is 15-15-15 with a mix of phosphorus, potassium, and nitrogen. Stop using fertilizer during the winter months, when active growth stops.
2. Night-Blooming Jasmine
Although jasmine is in the name of this aromatic plant, it actually belongs in the nightshade family. Night-blooming jasmine stands apart from other plants through its extremely fragrant flowers that only make themselves known at night. By giving it a full-sun location and letting the soil dry out between waterings, you can ensure your plant flourishes. Fertilize it during the growing season using a half-strength, balanced mix. Encourage more flowering by pruning the plant after it blooms.
If you’re looking for a compact, slow-grow citrus plant with fragrant blooms, kumquat just might be the perfect choice. Like other fragrant plants, the more sunlight it gets, the better. Just be sure not to let it sit in overly wet soil. In fact, you should only water the plant when the top 2 or 3 inches of soil is dry, stopping when you see water running out the drainage holes. In addition, do not place a kumquat near an air conditioner or heater, and keep it protected from drafty windows and doors. Fertilize the plant only while it is actively growing, using a fertilizer suitable for citrus.
4. Wax Plant
As its name suggests, this vine features waxy leaves along with aromatic star-shaped blooms. They thrive in bright environments full of indirect sunlight. Try to avoid harsh afternoon light, but watch plants closely as they will not bloom with too little light. During the growing season, water wax plants regularly, allowing the top 2 inches of soil to dry out between waterings. Refrain from trimming off the long, slender tendrils of the plant, as this is where new leaves and flowers develop.
5. Cuban Oregano
To get the best aroma out of Cuban oregano, either rub it with your hand or place it near a window so that the fragrance can drift throughout the room. Keep the plant in a small pot, pruning it regularly. For best results, place it in bright light and give it well-drained soil. Water it only when the top 2 inches of the soil are dry. When uncertain about watering, err on the side of caution — do not over-water the plant.