15 Fragrant Balcony Garden Plants

Imagine stepping onto your balcony and being greeted by the sweet aroma of fragrant flowers. 

With the right plant selection, you can transform your balcony into a calming retreat filled with delightful scents.

In this article, I’ll explore 15 fragrant plants that you can incorporate into your balcony garden.

I’ve selected a diverse range of plants to suit various conditions – from warm and sunny balconies to those that are cooler or shadier. 

No matter your location, you’ll be able to find the perfect scented plants to elevate your balcony garden.

As a landscape gardener, I’m always looking for ways to make outdoor spaces more enjoyable and relaxing for my clients.

One of my favorite ways to do this is by including fragrant plants in my balcony garden designs.

Whether it’s the sweet scent of lavender or the refreshing aroma of mint, fragrant plants can transform a small balcony into a peaceful oasis.

Plus, they attract pollinators like bees and butterflies, so they’re an important part of the garden ecosystem.


1. Lavender

Lavender is a popular and easy-to-grow plant, perfect for bringing a delightful fragrance to your balcony garden. 

With its beautiful purple flowers and silvery-gray foliage, it not only adds a lovely scent but also an attractive splash of color to your outdoor space.

There are many different varieties of lavender you can choose from, each with its unique fragrance and appearance. 

One popular variety is ‘Hidcote,’ known for its dark purple-blue flowers and compact mounded form. 

It blooms from late spring to summer and thrives in full sun.

lavender balcony plant

2. Gardenia

Gardenias are a great choice for a balcony garden, not only for their beauty but also for their enchanting fragrance. 

These heat-loving evergreen shrubs or trees produce attractive creamy-white flowers that contrast beautifully with their shiny, leathery dark green leaves.

Watering is crucial for Gardenias, because they require consistently moist soil. 

Avoid letting the soil dry out completely, but also take care not to overwater to avoid root rot.

gardenia balcony plant

3. Jasmine

Jasmine plants are a fantastic addition to your balcony garden due to their lovely fragrance and masses of small white flowers. 

According to Better Homes and Gardens, Jasmine grows well in full sun to partial shade, but the summer blooming varieties do best in a sunny area.

Jasmine can be grown in containers and trained to climb a trellis or the balcony railing.

jasmine balcony garden

4. Oriental Lily

Oriental Lilies are known for their captivating fragrance and large, showy flowers. 

They’ll grow well in a container on your balcony, ideally with a mixture of potting soil and compost for added nutrients. 

Oriental Lilies thrive in sunny locations, so make sure your balcony receives at least 6 hours of direct sunlight each day for best results.

oriental lilac on a balcony

5. Lilac

When it comes to fragrant balcony garden plants, lilacs are a popular choice for their captivating scent and beautiful blossoms.

They require plenty of sunlight, so you’ll need to provide your lilac with at least six hours of direct sun per day. 

Proper pruning is vital for your lilac’s health, fragrance, and appearance. 

Right after they finish blooming, trim any dead flowers and branches. 

This regular maintenance will encourage new growth and lead to a healthier plant.

lilac balcony plant

6. Alyssum

Alyssum is a beautiful annual with delicate flowers and sweet aroma. 

Planting sweet alyssum in pots on your balcony will not only create an eye-catching display but also attract a variety of beneficial pollinators.

Alyssum is highly versatile and can be combined with other plants to create a stunning container arrangement.

alyssum balcony plant

7. Dianthus

Dianthus plants would be a fantastic addition to your balcony garden due to their eye-catching colors, delicately frilled petals, and strong, clove-like fragrance. 

These low-maintenance perennials offer cottage-style appeal and are available in various colors, from white to almost black.

When planting Dianthus, choose a spot that provides an adequate amount of sunlight. 

They grow best in full sun, but they can also tolerate partial shade.

dianthus fragrant plants

8. Plumeria

Plumeria, also known as Frangipani, will bring a touch of tropical charm and a sweet fragrance to your balcony. 

They are small deciduous or semi-evergreen shrubs that can be grown in large containers. 

Plumeria plants come in a variety of colors, including white, yellow, pink, and red. 

Some of the most fragrant varieties to consider for your balcony garden are ‘Vera Cruz Rose’, ‘Mary Helen Eggenberger’, Makaha Sun, and Aztec Gold. 

fragrant plumeria plant

9. Rose

Roses are a classic choice for a fragrant balcony garden. 

Their delightful scent and diverse range of colors make them a favorite among plant enthusiasts.

Roses require at least six hours of sunlight daily, so make sure to place them in an area with ample sunlight. 

Regularly remove dead or damaged branches to promote new growth and prevent diseases.

Pruning also helps maintain the appearance of your rose bush and encourages more blooms.

rose growing on a balcony

10. Peony

With their lush, full blooms and captivating scent, peonies will add a touch of elegance to your outdoor space.

When planting peonies, make sure to give them enough space to grow, ideally in a large container with good drainage. 

They thrive in well-draining, rich soil, and prefer full sun or slightly dappled shade.

With proper care, your peonies will reward you with delightful fragrance and stunning blooms for years to come. 

peony balcony plant

11. Sweet Pea

Sweet peas are well-known for their butterfly-like flowers, sweet fragrance and attractive climbing habit.

They’re easy to grow and bloom in the spring and summer, bringing a burst of color to your balcony. 

Sweet peas come in a variety of colors, including pink, purple, red, and white.

sweet pea balcony garden

12. Hyacinth

Hyacinths are beautiful spring-flowering bulbs that will bring a delightful scent to your balcony garden.

They’re easy to care for and can be grown in containers, so they’re a perfect choice for small balcony gardens. 

Hyacinths come in a variety of colors, including pink, blue, white, and purple, so you can choose the perfect shade to complement your balcony decor. 

hyacinth plants on a balcony

13. Geranium

Geraniums come in an array of different varieties, and they’re known for their vibrant, long-lasting flowers and textured leaves.

There are many scented geranium varieties to choose from, such as lemon, rose, peppermint, and pine-scented geraniums. 

Each variety has its own unique scent profile, so if you prefer floral fragrances, rose geranium would be a great choice. 

If you’re looking for a refreshing scent, then consider the lemon geranium.

Geraniums have the added benefit of being a natural insect repellent, thanks to the essential oils contained in their leaves. [1]

geranium balcony plant

14. Rosemary

Rosemary is a fantastic addition to your balcony garden, not only for its beautiful smell but also to use when cooking. 

The aromatic oils in rosemary intensify with sun exposure, so make sure to place it in an area with lots of sunlight to enjoy its fragrance to the fullest.

Some varieties, such as “Tuscan Blue” or “Spice Island,” are known for their stronger scent and are ideal for a fragrant balcony garden.

When it comes to watering, rosemary prefers a somewhat dry environment. 

Water the plant deeply and then allow the soil to dry out before watering again. 

Over-watering can lead to root rot, so keep an eye on the moisture level of the soil.

rosemary balcony plant

15. Phlox

Phlox is an excellent choice for adding a touch of fragrance to your balcony garden. 

Their lovely blooms come in a variety of colors, so there’s one to suit everyone’s preferences.

Not only are phlox flowers visually appealing, but they also emit a pleasant fragrance that you can enjoy throughout the summer months.

I like to grow phlox in hanging baskets so that the flowers can cascade over the edge of the baskets.

phlox hanging plant on balcony


Adding fragrant plants to your balcony garden is a great way to create a peaceful and inviting outdoor space. 

Whether you choose jasmine, hyacinths, sweet peas, or any other fragrant plant, the sweet aroma and vibrant colors will create a beautiful and fragrant oasis.

Are you on Pinterest? Check out my Balcony Garden and Flower Gardening boards for more ideas. You can also find me on Facebook.

fragrant balcony plants

Kelly Martin

Hi, I'm Kelly Martin, a landscape gardener and designer with over 10 years experience. I have a passion for small space gardening and I love designing and creating beautiful outdoor spaces that maximize the potential of small urban gardens. Read more