July 10, 2020

3 Excellent Bloomers for Fragrant Summer Nights

Balmy summer nights are the perfect time to linger near the garden and enjoy the intoxicating fragrance of flowers that release their scent after the sun goes down.  Here are three favorite annuals that release their fragrance at night:

Moonflower

Moonflower

Moonflower (lpomoea alba)  A relative of the morning glory, moonflower is grown as an annual in most climates.  For those who love the large blooms the Moonflower produces fragrant, white, 4-6 inch flowers that open after dark.  Grown as an annual in colder climates, this beauty grows year-round in warmer climates (Zones 8-11).  This night blooming vine is perfect for an arbor close to the entrance to your home.

Evening Scented Stock

Evening Scented Stock

Evening Scented Stock (Matthiola hybrids)  With pink, mauve, or purple 1 inch blooms, stock releases a strong, spicy scent at night.   This plants flowers have a very powerful fragrance!   A rather plain looking plant, what the Scented stock does not have in looks it makes up in fragrance that only happens at night. The perfect flower for a night blooming garden, you truly will be shocked at its strong fragrance.  I have this planted near entrances to my home and under bedroom windows.  Easy to grow from seed.  Grows 12-18 inches tall. Best in full/partial sun.

Flowering Tobacco

Flowering Tobacco (Nicotiana spp.)  This fragrant plant’s scent is more intense at night.  Trumpet-shapped, tubular flowers open in the evening in shades of pink, red, green, or white.  This plant blooms repeatedly and grows 36 to 48 inches tall.  Perfect for much needed height to beds and borders, group it in cluster for more impact.  Sun to Partial Shade.  Warning: All parts of plant are poisonous if ingested.

 

 


5 Amazing & Easy-to-Grow Vines

You can add color, texture, and height to your garden with fast-growing annual vines.  Use them as a natural privacy screen, a welcoming habitat for butterflies and bees, or protection against sun, wind, and unattractive views.  Here are five of my favorite varieties.

black Eyed Susan

Black-Eyed Susan

Black-eyed Susan vine (Thunbergia alata).  This is a fast growing vine!  Black-eyed Susan grows easily from seed.  You can expect this tropical twining vine to grow 5 -8 feet tall and have vibrant orange, yellow, or white flowers although other varieties are available.  This plant is good for a trailer in a hanging pot or a window box or as a climber on a trellis.  Plant in full sun.

Corkscrew Vine

Corkscrew Vine

Corkscrew Vine (Vigna caracalla)  Another tropical, this sweetly scented twining vine (also called a snail vine) produces silvery blooms with lavender-pink, coiled centers and curved outer petals that look like seashells.  Clusters of blooms grow 12 inches long; the vine grows 25 feet tall.

Cypress Vine

Cypress Vine

Cypress Vine (lpomoea quamoclit).  Another member of the Morning Glory family and a favorite of Hummingbirds and Butterflies alike  is the Cypress Vine.  This twining vine has lacy, fern-like foliage and grows to 20 feet tall.  It produces star shaped red, pink and white flowers.  Easy to grow from seed.  Full sun.

Cardinal Climber (lpomoea x multifida). Another easy to grow from seed vine, this vigorous twining vine grows 15-20 feet tall and some varieties will grow to 30 ft. tall making it an excellent choice for covering fences or walls. Cardinal Climber produces trumpet shaped, deep red flowers (hence it’s name) with white or yellow throats from summer to fall. Great for attracting Hummingbirds! A member of the morning glory family, this vine does well in full Sun.

Cardinal Climber

Cardinal Climber

Hyacinth Bean

Hyacinth Bean

Hyacinth Bean (Lablab purpureus). My personal favorite. I love this plant! This striking vine is actually a perennial but is grown in colder climates as an annual. Widely grown in Southern Asia and Africa where the ripe seeds and the green pods are used for food, Hyacinth bean produces fragrant purple flowers, 4-6″ long, followed by velvety purple bean pods containing eatable peas (I’ve never eaten any). The stems are purple too as are the veins in the leaves. Grows to 20 feet tall and is beautiful on a trellis.

Happy Growing!

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