10 Fragrant Flowers for Pots

Beautifully scented flowers to grow in containers and pots

One of the best things about having a flower garden is being able to enjoy the heavenly aromas wafting through the garden.

In this article I’ve listed 10 popular fragrant flowers that are sure to awaken your sense of smell.

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geranium in a container


1. Lavender

Lavender is one of the most popular fragrant flowers and it grows well in containers.

There are many different varieties of lavender, but the two most fragrant varieties are Common Lavender (Lavandula angustifolia) and Lavandin (Lavandula x intermedia). [1]

These two varieties are grown commercially for their highly perfumed lavender oil.

Lavender grows well in a position with full sun and flowers from late spring through to late summer.

lavender in a pot

2. Rose

Most varieties of roses can be grown in containers, as long as the container is deep enough for the roots.

The fragrance of roses changes throughout the day, and the best temperature for smelling the aroma of roses is between 64 – 68 F (18 – 20 degrees Celsius). [2]

Bright and dark colored roses usually have the strongest scent.

Roses grow well in a sunny spot that is protected from wind.

Fragrant rose

3. Primrose

Primroses have fragrant flowers that come in a range of colors including red, pink, purple, white, blue, yellow and orange.

They usually flower in spring, but they will bloom in mid to late winter in areas with mild winter temperatures.  

Primroses can tolerate light frosts but not freezing temperatures.


4. Gardenia

Gardenias have beautifully scented white flowers and dwarf varieties of Gardenia are great for growing in pots.

They grow best in warm, humid climates in a sunny or partially shaded position.

Gardenias can tolerate dry conditions, but they need to be watered weekly.

Gardenias bloom from late spring until late fall.


5. Peony

Peonies are popular fragrant perennials with flowers in a variety of colors including white, pink, red and purple.

They grow best in areas with a cool winter climate. Cold temperatures help to promote the development of the flower bud.

Peonies grow best in a full sun position but in areas with hot summer temperatures, a partially shaded spot is better.


6. Geranium

Geraniums are highly fragrant flower plants that look great in containers, hanging baskets and window boxes.

They grow best in a sunny position, but they need to be shaded in hot afternoon sun.

Pruning geraniums can help to thicken up the plant and promote new growth.

When watering geraniums, it’s best to avoid getting the foliage wet to reduce the likelihood of fungal diseases.

Geranium pots will need to be moved indoors during winter in frost prone areas.


7. Hyacinths

Hyacinth flowers are beautifully scented and come in a variety of colors including purple, pink, blue cream and white.

Hyacinths have sturdy foliage, so they can be shallow planted in pots and containers.

Important Note: Hyacinth bulbs contain oxalic acid, which can irritate the skin so it’s best to wear gloves if you’re working with Hyacinth bulbs for long periods.

hyacinths in a pot

8. Sweet Alyssum

Sweet Alyssum is a short lived annual that produces masses of tiny fragrant flowers.

They grow well in pots and they’re also good for ground covers and rock gardens.

It only takes about 4 days for Sweet Alyssum seeds to germinate and the seedlings will tolerate light frost.

Sweet alyssum

9. Dianthus

Dianthus is an easy to grow perennial with fragrant flowers in shades of pink, red and white.

They look great growing in pots and they do best in a position with full sun.

Dianthus can withstand light frosts but not prolonged freezing temperatures.

Dianthus flowers

10. Daphne

Daphne flowers have a strong rose-citrus scent and come in a range in colors including white, yellow, bright pink and purple. [3]

They grow best in a position with part shade or full sun in cooler areas.

Daphne blooms in late winter and spring and will tolerate light frosts.

Daphne flower

These beautifully scented flowers are ideal for pots positioned on a balcony or in your backyard so you can enjoy their aroma.


Have you tried growing any of these fragrant flowers? Let me know in the comments below.

Are you on Pinterest? I have boards dedicated to Flower Gardening and Garden Ideas that you may enjoy. You can also find me on Facebook.

Fragrant flowers for pots

10 Best fragrant flowers for containers and pots

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

This Post Has 13 Comments

  1. Kristin

    All of these flowers hold such great scents! Each one takes me back to a memory in my life. I love having flowers around for their aroma!!

  2. Trish Veltman

    They’d all make quite a splash in the garden. The gardenias and the alyssum are my favourites – must get some.

  3. Despite Pain

    It’s so nice to walk through a garden which is filled with scented flowers. I love them all, but I think geraniums are one of my favourites. My gran used to grow them in pots inside her house, so they always reminds me of her.

  4. Lyanna Soria

    Those are all wonderful flowers and they look absolutely beautiful! If I were to pick, I’d love a bunch of Peonies in my room.

  5. Daphne Takahashi

    I’m soooo happy to know that there’s a flower with my name is really fragrant! I didn’t know about it! I will look for it to use it in my house!

  6. Gina (Love, Auntie)

    These flowers smell wonderful AND are so beautiful! Thanks for sharing. I’m curious can lavender can be grown inside?

    1. Kelly Martin

      Hi Gina, yes you can grow lavender indoors. It’s scent makes the house smell beautiful.

  7. Live Well Choose Joy

    Love the smell of flowers and their colors that can make any space look radiant!

  8. Lindsay Brown

    I love all of these flower scents! You’ve got me inspired for when the growing season comes back here in Alberta! I will be definitely planting these flowers in some pots around the house!

  9. abby hewes

    I love lavender! It’s great to grow in our area- it’s very hearty and drought-resistant. Plus it attracts bees!

  10. Live Learn Better

    We have a lavender pot in the kitchen, and waking up to it’s warm smell is everything to start your day with.

  11. Clarice

    Super loved your article. We just moved to our new home last weekend and now, I am starting to work on my garden. We do not have a wide-open space thus, I plan to grow them in containers and pots. Thank you for sharing these lists. Will check if I can find them locally.

    I would love to grow some lavender and daphnes at home.

  12. Betty

    Where I live in Northern California, daphne is known as a finicky plant. They can appear to be doing very well and then suddenly die. If sheltered, they can survive temperatures in the upper 20s. I have had several that have done beautifully any where from 7 to 20+ years old. Grower beware: They do not like a lot of water, and I suspect that could be be a cause for sudden demise. Despite sometimes being finicky, they are worth every effort!

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