I have a large raised bed (last year used for lockdown veg) approx. 3 m long, 1m deep and 1m high which sits at the side of the patio. It was great for salad and veg last year but I’d like to plant with scented flowers / shrubs this year as it is next to where we sit on the patio. I’d like a theme colour wise ie not random bits as the other half would throw in, and scent would be great. I think the fact that its a bank canvas is stopping me starting - any ideas ?
When you’re planning a blank canvas, always try to set yourself some parameters, e.g. is evergreen important? When do you want the scent in the year? What colours do you prefer? Is there one plant that you absolutely must have? In which case start with matching things around that. Otherwise it is very difficult to know where to start.
I love the scent of Sarcococca confusa in winter
Is the bed in full sun?
Yes, some more parameters would be very helpful! There are so many lovely plants to grow.
What I always grow next to my patio is flowering tobacco. This annual is very easy to grow and the scent in the evening is wonderful. If you choose a white variety, it looks like it glows in the dusk. And moths love it too… it’s very nice to watch them drink.
The raised bed gets sun from about 10am till around 3 when the sun goes behind a some large trees. Colourwise I like whites and pastel colours, even thought I might try all white. but that might be difficult. I need of basics that will give shape all year and I can add to it for seasonal interest. Also the back edge is up against a fence so you’ve only got access from three sides. I love roses, peonies, lupins, cosmos, lavender, cottage garden type plants. Any suggestions welcome to start my planning.
If you like a sweet scent, I would recommend Ipheion uniflorum.
I have this one in the photos
(please don’t ask me which one it is It won’t be a fancy one, but I can’t remember when I bought them, let alone the name)
When it’s sunny, the flowers smell beautiful.
The foliage does back for part of the year so you don’t get year round ground cover, but I’ve known mine to flower twice in a year and those star shaped flowers can be quite luminous.
It could be worth growing a scented climber up the back fence, I love Trachelospermum jasminoides.
White flowered plants are a good idea as they generally have some of the strongest scent.
The flowering tobacco would be good, Nicotiana alata. Lavender is available in white too. If you’re feeling tropical, Brugmansia have amazing sweet lemon scent.