The power of scent

One of the things I love about arranging flowers is their ability to be used to help set a scene or evoke a memory. For example, I always think of my mother in law whenever I smell geraniums, as she has them scattered throughout her house.  Also, a yellow rose with it’s lemony smell will always remind me of my mum.  I was recently reminded of the power of scents when working on  some wedding flowers.  The couple had asked me to put together some chair ends, and while I was getting the wonderful scent whilst putting together the bouquets, it wasn’t until they were all in situ that the scent really had its impact. It was so wonderful walking up the aisle, smelling the different scents of the flowers and how all those scents came together to create their own unique perfume. I still can smell it now, and I hope the couple, when they smell those scents in the future, will be taken back to their special day.

I’m a huge believer of having scented flowers, whether it’s just in the home or for special occasions. Here are just some of my favourites and a few that I recommend avoiding.

Garden Roses – Has to be my absolute favourite and they smell just wonderful. It really is like bringing a piece of your garden in.

Sweet Peas – I’m a little late to the party on sweet peas, but I’m now a little obsessed with them. I adore their scent and just love the classic english country look they bring. I always try and add them to a bouquet. It’s like spritzing the bouquet with perfume.

Peonies – Only available for a short period of time but my goodness they really do smell as good as they look. 

Stocks – These provide such a lovely subtle smell and are great in arrangements, especially pedestals as they bring such a structure to an arrangement.

Philadelphus or mock orange – One of my favourites, such a dark green shrub with an abundance of white blooms. They really do smell incredible but unfortunately only flower briefly. A definite must if you are getting married in June. 

Lavender – A great calming summer flower to use. I love adding them to bud vases and bouquets  or just using a sprig of them on their own. 

Herbs – I love adding herbs to arrangements and bouquets. I regularly use Rosemary as it provides such a wonderful, calming scent as well as mint, which brings such an uplifting scent to an arrangement. Herbs are also the perfect addition to a buttonhole and another top tip is to combine it with a geranium leaf. It adds such a wonderful scent.

Jasmine – The softly sweet scent of jasmine is just glorious and it also has a calming effect so a great addition if you are feeling anxious or stressed. 

Eucalyptus – Definitely one of my favourites and hence why I use it a lot! Essential oils extracted from eucalyptus are widely used in beauty products and herbal remedies as it’s believed to have a healing effect. Try tieing a bunch from your shower head, especially if you have a cold as the scent is a fabulous, natural way to clear your head. 

Avoid certain blooms

While I adore Alliums, remember that they are a member of the onion family. If you use them in arrangements then you will be able to smell onions. Limonium and gypsophilia also have a rather potent scent and most probably best to avoid if using for an event in large quatitites.

And finally, remember, fresh is best.  Flowers will release a not so pleasant smell if they are not fresh so its always important to get the best out of your flowers by conditioning them correctly and only using the freshest blooms.

With love and stay safe, Flowers and Lifestyle by Margot –

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