Saturday, March 11

Book Review - RHS Companion to Scented Plants

A while ago, I agreed to review the RHS Companion to Scented Plants and had completely forgotten about it until I received an email from Lucy at Loose and Leafy asking if I was still willing to write a review and as a result the hefty publication thumped through the letter box last week. The postman had a real struggle to prise it through the letter box. I really didn't understand why he didn't just knock on the door. Fortunately the book was unscathed.

Immediate impressions were that the book was very comprehensive and the sort of book to dip into or use as a reference.
The first few chapters cover general information and ideas on using scent in the garden and include ideas on planning a scented garden. I particularly liked the plans for scented gardens in different settings - shade, paved or gravel area, terrace with pots (which I am hoping will inspire us to make more of our patio) and formal garden. Each plan features a layout and planting scheme.
Following this are a set of chapters each well illustrated and covering a different type of plant -shrubs, bulbs, herbs, perennials etc.

One chapter covers tender plants, many of which I recognise as house plants.
The last few pages provide several useful lists such as:

A calendar of principal scented plants ...

... and a list of plants by habitat.
There's also a useful hardiness chart.
Finally everything is cross referenced by a very detailed index.

The RHS Companion to Scented Plants has opened my eyes to the vast number of scented plants out there and I am sure will provide a useful resource that I can keep dipping into.


9 comments:

  1. RHS books always seem to be very thorough. They aren't cheap, but you do get your money's worth out of them.

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    1. I didn't realise that there were so many scented flowers, Denorah

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  2. I love comprehensive books - those you can really dig your teeth into and learn from. I'm hoping to add more scented flowers in the garden in the coming years. I'm planning on adding some lilacs this year but would love a highly scented rose or two as well.

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    1. We bought some climbing roses that are supposed to be highly scented a year ago Margaret but they were too small to judge. They are Chris - yellow, Etoile d'Hollande - red, Meg - single and I think that the other is Maigold - single.

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  3. I'm tempted Sue, after having a peek in Waterstones as well as reading reviews but am now trying to cut down on my book buying. I've got a well thumbed copy of Stephen Lacey's ' The Startling Jungle' which came out in 1986 which has scent as one of its main themes. Very few photos but an excellent read.

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    1. I love books with photos, Anna, I'm always disappointed if there are none.

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  4. That does look like a useful book that you can refer to at a later date.xxx

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    1. I think it will make a good reference book, Dina

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  5. I have that book. It's very useful as I have a seating area in the garden where I like to grow scented plants

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