Boxwood scent

birdgardner(NJ/ 6b)November 7, 2009

One of my catalog's advertised a variety "without the typical unpleasant scent." I LOVE the scent of boxwoods when they warm up in the sun! They were one of my favorite things at my grandparents' house. I ruffle them up and inhale and wouldn't have one without the scent.

How about you? Love or hate? Am I just weird?

Are there plant fragrances you like that other people don't, or ones that you can't stand that others like?

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When I first purchased my boxwood, I didn't know about the odor. I purchased them because they are quite deer resistant. When I put them into the car, I assumed that the odor I smelled was some fertilizer applied to them. Was not crazy about the smell, but outside, planted in the ground, I really don't smell them. Don't know how I will eventually feel about the smell. I do like the aroma of marigolds and know many people hate them. On the other hand, I hate the the smell of Pelargoniums (geraniums). Interesting topic--olfactory preferences in the botanical realm.

    Bookmark   November 7, 2009 at 2:52PM
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cyn427 (zone 7)

I like the scent of boxwood and use it for decoration at Christmas when I can convince a neighbor to let me pinch hers!

    Bookmark   November 8, 2009 at 11:56AM
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botann(z8 SEof Seattle)

I too remember them from my grandmother's garden when I was very young. They always bring back a lot of memories. If it weren't for the memories I wouldn't enjoy the smell at all.
I have a few just for the memories. I took cuttings from her garden years after she died.

    Bookmark   November 8, 2009 at 10:24PM
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Count me among those that think the aroma is quite offensive. And I like cats!

    Bookmark   November 9, 2009 at 11:08AM
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rhizo_1 (North AL) zone 7

Heehee, I think they smell more like a (much marked) DOG target, than a cat's!

Can't stand the odor.

    Bookmark   November 9, 2009 at 12:48PM
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birdgardner(NJ/ 6b)

It doesn't smell like cat pee in the least to me - which is a loathesome smell if you've ever been a teen-aged maid going into a house where the litterbox hasn't been changed since the last time you were there...or your grandmother took a charitable interest in the local cat lady.

    Bookmark   November 9, 2009 at 3:58PM
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Carrie B(6B/7A)

I find their scent to be mild, and non-offensive. I know people who love the scent and people who hate it. I don't like the smell of marigolds and mums, but don't notice it unless I'm planting them or otherwise up close and personal.

Over the summer, I was planting some Scotch broom (not by choice!) and my boss said "sometimes I forget how fragrant they are". I thought she had to be joking. She wasn't.

    Bookmark   November 11, 2009 at 2:37PM
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Actually, I like the scent of boxwood foliage. I thought it was crazy when I heard Queen Anne (I think - might have been a different queen) had all the boxwoods in the royal gardens removed because she didn't like the scent. Then mine bloomed! Ick!!! We had them at our house growing up, but I had never noticed them blooming before. Luckily, they only bloom for a fairly short period, so I'm keeping them.

    Bookmark   November 13, 2009 at 4:54PM
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Nothing means "Washington DC" more to me than that scent. English boxwood does not grow in zone 4, but the Green____ crosses do. They are only half english boxwood (the rest is korean) so the aroma is greatly reduced. I have 4 of the Chicagoland Green boxwoods, and on a humid, warm day in Minnesota sometimes they put out enough aroma it smells like DC. But not often enough for me!

    Bookmark   November 14, 2009 at 8:06PM
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I grew up with boxwood, but the only opportunity I had to smell it was at Grandma's house, maybe every other year. I think that may have had something to do with its specialness. I would lay my whole self across the bush, at nine or ten years of age, it was a perfect fit, and breath it in deeply. I have been wanting to purchase boxwood ever since, but need to do something about my soil before I get the precious thing here.

    Bookmark   November 15, 2009 at 7:48AM
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Loretta NJ Z6

My step sisters searched high and low in their new house to try to figure out where the cats were "not" using their litterbox. They scrubbed the floors and steamed the carpets. Turns out they had a row of boxwoods planted beneath the windows. They removed them.

Personally, although I find it smells like cat, I like it (although not in the house). It reminds me of warm summers outside when I was younger.

    Bookmark   December 6, 2009 at 11:19AM
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I'm with ya 100%, birdgardner! ... lol, I guess beauty is in the eye (and in the nose) of the beholder ;) ... I LOVE the scent of boxwoods! :) Got a whole row of 'em on the south side of my house .. the heat of the sun makes 'em grow like crazy, and their scent on the breeze through my open windows is a special treat on warm days and nights! :)

    Bookmark   October 8, 2011 at 11:35AM
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rhizo_1 (North AL) zone 7

I love it when there's a discussion in one of the forums about 'scents and stinks'. It's often hilariously subjective, isn't it?

    Bookmark   October 10, 2011 at 1:03PM
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lol, no 'girlie' nose here by any means � I planted another row of those intensely hardy, beautifully green, and fragrant Winter Gem Boxwoods on the north side of the house a few years ago to make sure I could enjoy their intoxicating scent nomatter the wind direction, and was indeed finally rewarded late this summer! :)
These boxwoods flourish in the same lousy compact soil where not even my other favorites, the marigolds, struggle! ...

    Bookmark   October 22, 2011 at 4:00AM
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flora_uk(SW UK 8/9)

vermontlove - I don't think you need to deprive yourself of box. Like DRyan says, it will grow in terrible soil and is a cinch from cuttings. To me the smell of box means summer in France. It is seldom hot enough here in my garden to release the smell.

    Bookmark   October 23, 2011 at 12:44PM
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