Fragrant herbs or flowers in Coastal NC

stonewallwillFebruary 26, 2008

I'm a vegetable gardener who's new to this flower thing. I really wanted to grow lavender this year but everything I've read makes growing it in this area seem impossible. How about throwing some suggestions for fragrant plants, shrubs and herbs my way.

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ashef(coastal NC z8)

You can grow lavender, just not ENGLISH lavender. It's too hot here for English lavender. But Spanish and French lavender do well for me on Topsail Island -- they love sandy, low-nutrient soil and that's all I have! Specifically, I have had great success with Spanish lavender (there's only one variety as far as I can tell) and with the French lavender variety Goodwin Creek Gray Lavender. Both are beautiful and smell fabulous and once established seem to bloom non-stop all summer. They are also perennials. And of course, the queen of fragrant shrubs is gardenia, which loves everything about coastal NC and acts like a native plant here. I've seen 15 foot gardenia "bushes" covered with blooms beside long abandoned, falling-down houses in this area. Allie

    Bookmark   February 26, 2008 at 12:44PM
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ankraras(8/9AZ)

How about Rosemary, Myrtle and Rose. All have been favorites in my garden for many years.

Allie;- I am anxiously awaiting the lovely scent of blooming Gardenia right now.

    Bookmark   February 26, 2008 at 1:33PM
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stonewallwill

Thanks Allie. Maybe I'll give lavender a try after-all. Gardenias are actuall the only fragrant plants that I'm definitely going to have in my garden but I have a "clean slate" and need ideas for the rest of my garden.

Ankraras, I keep rosemary and basil in my herb garden and have actually been toying with the thought of keeping those two herbs in my flower garden. Is that crazy?

    Bookmark   February 26, 2008 at 5:13PM
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beachbarbie(z9a/8b NC)

There's also almond bush and brugmansias.
Many people around here have roseamry as a major part of their landscaping. Basil would look great in a flower garden. The light green color would show up and contrast against darker leaves wonderfuly.
Barb

    Bookmark   February 28, 2008 at 6:50PM
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ankraras(8/9AZ)

We are gardeners! Gardeners curb their plant appetite by investigating the possibilities for fresh new look to the garden. They improve their gardening skills with their ideas then exercise their creativity. ;-]

Does Basil survive through the winter there?

Supannee

    Bookmark   February 29, 2008 at 11:57AM
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stonewallwill

Sorry, I've been away for a little while. To answer your question, I've never actually tried to keep basil year-round but I'm pretty sure that it gets too cold here. However, Spring through Fall it grows as well as I've ever seen and individual plants can get rather large in a very small amount of time.

If I plant as many as I'm thinking of, they would yield far more than I could use or save so I'm considering letting a couple plants flower.

    Bookmark   March 10, 2008 at 8:23AM
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wilmington_islander(9A/Sunset 28)

don't forget tea olive or confederate jasmine!

    Bookmark   March 18, 2008 at 5:02PM
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laurabs(7b)

Russian sage is pretty. I have it and although it comes up fairly late, it is great for carrying blooms into the fall. The gray leaves have a pretty shape and texture, and I find it is good for cooking.

There are many salvias that would grow well there:

http://www.plantdelights.com/Catalog/Current/page76.html
Salvia chamaedryoides is probably my favorite, although a NICE fragrance is something it does NOT have. More like litter box. :o"

I like wine cups, and they grow in sandy soil:
http://aggie-horticulture.tamu.edu/wildseed/41/41.7.html

Here is a link that might be useful: Russian sage pic

    Bookmark   March 22, 2008 at 7:27PM
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beachbarbie(z9a/8b NC)

There's also daphne, pittisporum (at least for a few weeks in the spring) and ginger lilies. Don't forget that roses do well in our areas also.
Amond bush is wonderful. I bought one to help mask my compost pile (sight and smell) and it performs very well!
Barb

    Bookmark   April 8, 2008 at 8:39PM
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