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polianthes tuberosa

On 20, Sep 2016 | No Comments | In plants, scents | By All Year Garden

Aah, the queen of fragrance, Polianthes tuberosa, a joy to gardeners and perfumers alike, probably the most fragrant flower ever. Its heady perfume is sultry and intense, a single flower stem can saturate a room with fragrance.

Tuberosa is a hot climate bulb, and much like show chrysanthemums and long stem roses it is easier to get it as a cut flower than to enjoy it in your garden. Growing these in a pot on the balcony is an extra special indulgence for a northern gardener.

Did you know that tuberose essence is a classic for perfume middle notes? Its strong floral scent reminiscent of linden flowers and incense lingers on the skin and its intensity complements the fresher accents of citrus or aloe.

Tuberoses are hardy to zone 8, so if you want to keep them in your garden you have to dig up the bulbs after the last frost, wash and air dry them and store them in a cool dry place until spring.

Why bother to grow these plants? I planted them because I love them, isn’t this reason enough to grow a flower in your garden? Contrary to my preconceived notion tuberoses are not fussy plants, much like any bulb you just plant and water them. They just don’t like the cold, is all.