5 Great-Smelling Plants to Freshen Up Your Apartment

Field of Lavender

I’m ripping off Apartment Therapy again; get over it.

Maybe one day I’ll plant that apartment garden that makes you do a double take … and maybe one day I’ll pick up where I left off with my astrophysics hobby, too. No matter, this is what Internet journalism is all about … when you don’t know enough about a subject to be an authority, you magically conjure up someone who does. Well anybody can do that, you muse. Yeah, well, I don’t see you doing it. Get over yourself with your fresh-ground coffee, MacBook Pro and Gucci glasses. This is my show.

I’m highlighting five plants that will make your apartment balcony smell better, the article says. Well, they’d probably make most any place smell better.


[ Related: 5 Tips for Starting Your Own Apartment Garden ]


And for some of you out there, I’m betting this could be very useful … of course, the ones with smelly apartments are likely the kind who are too lazy to even bother. But what do I look like? The Tony Robbins of article-swiping bloggers? Unlike that creepy guy, I can only lead you to verdant waters, not motivate you to get that trowel ready to use.

Just to show you I’m an equal opportunity thief, I’m also linking to Joel M. Lerner’s Washington Post article on plants (most of them the flowering kind) that are good to grow, especially in this area.

OK, now, five plants that will make your Old Town Alexandria abode smell good.


1. Lavender – Yes, it’s not just a pretty color. It’s a flowering plant that can be quite beautiful. It’s drought-tolerant, likes plenty of sun, and you can even shear the dead blossoms and put them somewhere else, as they keep their scent. Almost makes you want to call them the Purple Zombie plant.

2. Scented Geranium – Ah, here we have one where the leaves create the pleasing aroma. There are many types, and they’re generally easy to grow.

[ Related: Spring Cleaning Essentials for Your Apartment ]

3. Honeysuckle – Anyone who grew up in the region knows of wild honeysuckle, properly called Japanese honeysuckle. When I was a kid I loved them for their nectar. But these things can give off a powerful odor as well. Here is an in-depth guide to planting this natural treat.

4. Gardenias – The author brags about the fragrance of “those magical white blooms,” even if she hasn’t personally had any sustained success with gardenias. You may need to protect them in sub-freezing temperatures though.

5. Mint – These hardy plants have many uses and smell like, well, mint. The author says the plant is pretty much magical to her: “You can eat the leaves, drink the tea made from the leaves and you can’t really kill it.” Maybe the Purple Zombie plant has a green cousin? When you cut this plant’s leaves, it’s pungently good to your nostrils. But if you have a garden, make sure to plant it away from others.


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Scott D

Scott D

Scott is a local writer and has been with the Apartment Showcase blog since its inception in 2010.

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