Our sense of smell is uniquely tied to the emotional centers of our brain. That’s why the smell of your favorite food can make you think of home, while a citrus scent might give you more energy.
Most of us associate home with comfort and safety, as well as relaxation. We arrange furniture and paint different rooms certain colors to help. One thing we often forget about, though, is the scent.
If you want to make your home a true oasis of comfort, adding some fragrant houseplants can help. These nine popular plants will help you create a space where you can really feel at home.
1. Gardenia is the King of Fragrant Houseplants
Check out any list of fragrant plants and you’re likely to see gardenia listed there. It’s not hard to see why. With a little TLC, these plants will blossom almost anywhere. While it’s more common to grow them outside, you can also keep them indoors.
Gardenia does have a strong scent, which tends to divide people. If you’re in the “love it” category, help your gardenia plant blossom by finding it a sunny spot to soak up the rays. High humidity and cool nighttime temperatures also help.
2. Jasmine is Sweet All Year Round
No list of fragrant indoor plants is complete without mentioning jasmine. You can count on this plant to keep blooming, even in the dead of winter.
To get the most out of a jasmine plant, provide it with as much light as possible. Water in moderation, and keep the nighttime temperatures down. With these tips, you’ll be able to enjoy the scent of this plant even on the darkest winter nights.
If you choose an Arabian jasmine, you can even use the flowers to make fragrant tea.
3. Dwarf Citrus Plants do Double Duty
It’s not hard to see (or smell) why any sort of citrus plant should make the list of best smelling plants. While you might think of lemon or orange trees growing outside in someone’s yard, it’s just as easy to bring them inside.
Citrus is often associated with energy, so place a dwarf variety in your home to make the most of the zesty scent. Better yet, many varieties will yield fruit so you can get your vitamin C too.
4. Lavender Makes for Sweet Dreams
Is there anything more soothing than the scent of lavender? The showy purple flowers make the plant a visual stunner too.
Lavender loves light, so place it in a sunny spot, like a sunroom or breakfast nook. If the space can do double duty as a place to relax or even daydream, so much the better.
If you want to keep lavender in the bedroom, be sure to add some artificial light and keep the temperature down.
5. Stephanotis is Great for Beginners
Stephanotis has to be one of the best indoor plants. Not only does it smell great, but it’s also easy to grow. While many people use it in floral arrangements, it’s easiest to enjoy the flowers on the vine itself.
Give this plant a little help with support from a trellis or a ring. Then sit back and enjoy the delicate blossoms of this fragrant houseplant.
6. Bring Plumeria Outside for Summer Growth
If we’re talking about plants that smell good, we can’t leave the cheery plumeria off the list. This tree’s showy flowers are often used to make Hawaiian leis, but it also smells great.
Plumeria likes both heat and light, which is characteristic of the best plants for around the pool. Keep in mind that plumeria likes lots of water. You’ll need to provide some extra hydration if you move it outdoors or poolside.
Move the pot back indoors for the cooler months, and this tree will keep blooming for years to come.
7. Orchids Are for More Than Show
When someone says “orchids,” you likely think of any number of showy flowers. There are hundreds of species of orchids. Almost all of them are renowned for their bright colors and beautiful flowers.
Fewer of them are known for their scent. There are a few varieties you could choose to provide a luxe natural perfume for your home. Oncidium orchids are easy to grow, and some varieties even smell like chocolate.
Do your research before purchasing an orchid. Some flower only once a year, while others will bloom more often.
8. Enjoy the Unique Scent of Eucalyptus
You might not think of eucalyptus when you’re thinking of indoor plants that smell good, but don’t count this one out. Although it’s native to Australia, this tree is easy to grow and makes a great showpiece.
Eucalyptus thrives in bright light, but it doesn’t like things too hot or too cold. Keep the temperature just right and water it often.
Eucalyptus is used in medicinal products, because its scent helps clear both airways and minds. With your own eucalyptus plant, all you need to do is rub the leaves to enjoy the scent.
9. Hoya is Back in Style
Hoyas were once popular houseplants, but they fell out of favor. Now, they’re making a comeback, and it couldn’t happen soon enough.
Hoyas have waxy green leaves, which makes them attractive even when they’re not in bloom. The plant can take some time to bloom, but you’ll be rewarded with sweetly scented pink or white flowers.
Hoya is also a fantastic plant for beginners. It likes medium to bright light, but it won’t mind if you forget to water it once in a while. It’s also a good choice for moving poolside in summer, as plants with waxy leaves don’t mind getting splashed.
The Aroma of Home
Any of these fragrant houseplants can help you add to a sense of comfort and safety in your home. Whether you want to relax or feel energized, the right scent can help you create a sensory escape from the world.
Aroma is just one way to make a house feel more like home. You can check out more tips and how-tos to help turn your home into your refuge from the world.