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Top Aromatic Plants for a Sweet-Smelling Dog

I love pottering in the greenhouse and garden and listening to classic rock with my Labradoodle, Florrie.


Last year we had a family holiday in the Cotswolds. Florrie Labradoodle came too.

One sunny afternoon, we paid a visit to the local lavender farm near to the pretty village of Broadway. It was quite pleasant wandering through the different pink, purple and blue flowering plants. We never knew there were so many different varieties!

The funny thing was that for the rest of the holiday, Florrie smelt sweetly of lavender! We thought we had a little old lady staying with us! Gone was her usual doggy smell, to be replaced by a pleasant flowery, floral perfume!

The lavender plants at the farm had been at the perfect height for Florrie to brush against and release their aroma onto her fur.

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This made me think about growing scented plants in our own garden. Could we create a potpourri of pleasant perfumes for Florrie to rub up against? Perhaps a few strategically placed plants in borders and pots would do the trick. Could this be the end of doggy smells indoors?

After a little research, I have shortlisted these recommendations to try.

Scented geranium

Scented geranium

1. Scented Geranium

Many call this plant a scented geranium but it’s official name is pelargonium. The leaves of the pelargonium release a scented oil when you pinch them or they are rubbed against.

There are a whole range of different scents to try. Lemon is perhaps the most popular as it is known for its mosquito-repelling abilities. There are also orange, mint, rose, apple and even chocolate and cola varieties!

They can be grown indoors or outdoors in pots or direct in the garden border on the edge of pathways. They bloom during spring and summer but with smaller flowers than the standard geranium.

Pelargoniums are also very easy to propagate from cuttings, so before you know it you could have a whole row of scented plants!



2. Mint

Mint, particularly spearmint and peppermint, is another fragrant aromatic plant. It has jagged edged leaves on square shaped stems. Rub mint between your fingers and it will release the familiar pungent smell associated with sweets, chewing gum, teas and toothpaste.

Mint is easy to grow and quite robust, so it can withstand being trampled by a labradoodle chasing a ball!

Mint grows vigorously, so it is easiest to contain within a pot. If you grow it in the ground it is best to plant in a ‘bottomless’ bucket. Keep the rim of the bucket above the ground to prevent the mint spreading by sending out ‘runners’.

Plants need to be be hardy enough to withstand your furry friend

Plants need to be be hardy enough to withstand your furry friend

3. Night Scented Stock

I remember growing night scented stock as a child. On its own it is quite an insignificant annual with pale lilac flowers. However, in the evening, when the flowers open, they give out an amazing fragrance which is similar to roses and vanilla combined.

They are perfect to fill in holes in the border or to plant amongst more ‘showy’ flowers. For example, I always mix night scented stock seeds with Virginia stock. Virginia stock have much bigger pink, purple or white flowers each with four petals.

Night scented stock grow to about 18 inches tall—the perfect height for a dog to brush against when going out for a bedtime toilet break! They are easy to grow even in poor quality soil. Try growing them near a window or doorway so their scent can waft indoors on a summer evening!



4. Lavender

Lavender is named after the colour of its flowers and is known for its floral fragrance and blue or purple flowers. Lavender is a popular fragrance and is used in soaps, oils, and bath and body products.

English lavender are tough hardy plants for borders or containers. They prefer full sun and dry free-draining soil. Their silver grey leaves are covered in fine hairs which contain the essential oils.

Florrie labradoodle loves sunbathing on a soft bed in the garden and lavender is the bedding she prefers!

Florrie smelt sweetly of lavender! We thought we had a little old lady staying with us!


5. Nicotiana

Nicotiana, the flowering tobacco plant, is known for its night-time scent. It comes in a variety of colours from red, white, pink and purple through to lime green. There is also a range of heights from 5 foot tall back of the border plants to smaller varieties just a few inches high ideal for pots and containers. So there are many different options to help transfer their scent to your furry friend!

Nicotiana grow rapidly and will soon have clusters of trumpet-shaped flowers on multi-branching stems. They attract a variety of moths in the evening so also good for the ecology in your garden!



Suzie ONeill from Lost in La La Land on September 15, 2019:

I really enjoyed reading this article! The pup pictures are awesome! :)

Abitha Deepak on September 12, 2019:

This is such refreshing, hilarious read, Florrie is a star! Her name makes so much sense now, doesn't it?

Alison Monroe on September 11, 2019:

This is funny!