Eucharis Scent?

mare2(5bSt.Louis)January 18, 2005

Recently found a plant marked simply "Eucharis" in bloom at a garden center. Looks just like pictures of grandiflora and is exactly 2Â tall. What is this supposed to smell like?

Mine has a very odd smell that I had hoped would perk up after bringing it home. Smells for all the world like vinyl to me. Specifically, it reminds me of the smell that used to waft out of the box when my daughter opened a new Barbie doll. ??!! Everyone I've quizzed agrees it's an odd scent.

Is it possible I got a weird variety? Or does it "throw" its sent? There's a nice smell in the room, but it could be something else. Or is it just my nose?? (Honestly, the more I find myself...ahem...stumbling down the other side of that hill, the less my body parts seem to want to cooperate. Is my nose going, too?) TIA!!!

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risingpower1(Essex, UK)

I can only find the grandiflora there unless of course it's one of the others here:

    Bookmark   January 18, 2005 at 2:28PM
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battlepanda(z5 MA)

Man, I've never grown eucharis. But I've smelt it in a greenhouse at Kew Gardens in London and to my mind it has the softest, most gently sweet exhalation of any tropical flower. I certainly did not detect any vinyl! But the nose is a most inexact organ (at least in humans). There's no right and wrong to individual interpretations.

Does your plant look like a large peace lily with white blooms resembling narcissus? That's what the plant I smelt at Kew looked like.

    Bookmark   January 18, 2005 at 4:53PM
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Ispahan Zone6a Chicago

Hi Mare:

I grow this plant and would liken the fragrance to a soft, gentle, wafting version of Ivory dish soap (the regular scent, not the horrible new one that comes in a pale green bottle). Definitely no vinyl, LOL.

That said, I do know of several Eucharis species that are rumored to have "sour" scents. I think this includes Eucharis formosa, but I don't know if this plant is similar enough to E. amazonica or E. x grandiflora to be confused with them.

I think if other people also find the fragrance unpleasant, then you just have a bad clone. Usually people swoon when they smell mine.

    Bookmark   January 18, 2005 at 7:30PM
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Thanks R.P., and I liked your description, battlepanda; that is what it looks like. That's part of what's so startling. That weird smell definitely doesn't go with such a graceful, elegant beauty that somehow manages to look demure and imposing at the same time! Looks like it should smell exactly as you all described.

Hi Ispahan--That's what I was afraid of. I know you were the one who originally got me wanting this one, and you haven't misled me yet. Sigh...guess I'll keep looking. Had really hoped I'd lucked out finding a nicely established one. <: you mentioned amazonica grandiflora--aren they synonyms if not which do recommend>

    Bookmark   January 19, 2005 at 5:09PM
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Ispahan Zone6a Chicago

Hi Mare:

To be honest, I am not sure if they are synonyms or not. I have seem them being used interchangeably and then I have also read that E. x grandiflora is a hybrid of E. amazonica.

I just looked up Eucharis in John E. Bryan's reference book called "Bulbs" and he talks of several known clones of E. x grandiflora that are available (where I do not know), each with slightly different qualities and one that even has a stronger fragrance than normal. Therefore, I think it is possible that you just got a bad clone with a stinky vinyl scent. So unfortunate, because this really is a great, easy plant.

    Bookmark   January 19, 2005 at 10:36PM
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The one I own has flowers with the fragrance of southern magnolia. Mine was acquired from Home Depot.

    Bookmark   January 20, 2005 at 2:21PM
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weedwacker1(z5 StLouis)

Boo Hoo....I was with Mare when we found that eucharis and we bought a big one and split now both of us have a plant that doesn't have that beautiful fragrance we keep hearing about! Maybe someday.....

Here is a link that might be useful: The Best of Home Gardening

    Bookmark   February 21, 2005 at 11:57AM
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inga007(Ont. 6a)

Well, this forum seems extinct, but I just have a brand new bloom on my Eucharis amazonica. I have to stick my nose right into it, to be able to tell it has a very faint, but pleasant smell. I would say, maybe like a soap perfume.
I was told many years ago about this very fragrant bloom.
May be a different hybrid or may be at a different time of day.
I love the bloom, but am a little disjointed about the slight fragrance.

    Bookmark   August 5, 2014 at 12:32PM
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Robert (zone 7a, Oklahoma)

Extinct! Check out the 'Blooming in' threads we do every month on this forum! :)

Glad to hear yours is blooming.
I've only smelled eucharis at a local greenhouse.
Not sure what species/cultivar it is though but it wasn't a strong scent like a sambac jasmine bloom.


    Bookmark   August 5, 2014 at 1:29PM
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Funny, I'd forgotten about that. It ended up dying, but I wasn't too upset. Guess I got a dud. Glad yours smells good, inga!

    Bookmark   August 9, 2014 at 8:07PM
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