The Fragrant Herb Garden Zone 8

 
 

 Lemon Verbena, Powis Castle Artemisia, French Lavender, Rober's Lemon Rose Sented Geranium, Pineapple Sage, 
Tangerine Scented Marigold

 

It is hard to imagine a time when taking in the fragrance of spring was more inviting than taking in the latest movie. But, enjoying the heady aromas of flowers bursting forth after a dark and dismal winter used to be high entertainment. Fragrant plants like herbs make gardening a whole lot more exciting. 

The herbs chosen for this garden are hardy enough to return each year in Zone 8 and up, giving the garden and the gardener a chance to appreciate the advantage of having aromatic plants in the landscape. Knowing that a plant will return to provide its aromatic essence in the same way year after year is not only comforting but also memorable. 

These plants all prefer full sun and well drained soil with plenty of moisture through the hot summer months. Water starved plants do not perform well in the garden and their ability to emit fragrance is reduced.

 

 

Lemon Verbena
 
(Aloysia triphylla)

Aloysia triphylla Lemon Verbena

Lemon Verbena is reminiscent of lemon candy, sweet with strong lemon flavor and no sourness. In Zone 8, it looses its leaves each winter and exposes its open airy construction. It is normal for some of the stems to die each winter. New growth sprouts from the ground and pushes from existing wood. 

The small cream colored flowers cover the tops of the stems in early autumn. In warmer zones, it will remain evergreen. Make sun tea with fresh leaves or dry stems and shred the leaves into an airtight container. Enjoy this luscious lemon flavor in teas and other foods year round.

 

 

Powis Castle Artemisia
(Artemisia arborescens x absinthium)

Artemisia arborescens x absinthium  Powis Castle Artemisia

Powis Castle Artemisia is fragrant, soft to touch, great to look at and extremely drought tolerant. These clean scented aromatic leaves are perfect for making fresh pungent herbal wreaths. In Zone 8, the plants can be left unpruned or shaped to fit most any reasonable space. 

It rarely flowers which makes for a tidy bush. Plant Powis Castle Artemisia and Woolly Lavender where their silvery luminescence can be enjoyed in the evening.

 

 

French Lavender
(Lavandula dentata)

French and Yellow Lavender in Bloom

French Lavender is a unique lavender with a clean fresh scent. Sometimes called everblooming lavender, it is pretty much in bloom from spring until winter. It blooms so much it can be hard to know when to prune it. We prune for shape.

If it is allowed to get too wide the plant looks untidy and grows leggy. Cutting it into a nicely shaped hedge a couple of times a year leaves us with a highly fragrant ornamental landscape lavender. French lavender looks stunning planted near Yellow Lavender, another zone 8 fragrant plant. Rather than tall wispy flower wands, both of these lavenders have short flower stems with thick pineapple shaped flower heads. Each head is adorned with lavender leaves called bracts.
While not usually used in cooking, it is edible and is preferred by some chefs for its unique piney taste.

 

 

Rober's Lemon Rose Scented Geranium
(Pelargonium 'Rober's Lemon Rose')

Rober's Lemon Rose Scented Geranium

Few plants are as wonderfully fragrant as scented geraniums. Rober’s Lemon Rose is a mix between citrus and rose. It grows quite large, about two to three feet tall and three to five feet wide.
Unless you garden in a frost free zone or close to it, Rober’s Lemon Rose will die back to the ground each year. It returns wider each year and continues to grow bigger as summer progresses. Scented Geraniums release their fragrance when rubbed or brushed against. They also release a scent when water splashes on the leaves during a hot day.

 

 

Pineapple Sage
(Salvia elegans)

Salvia elegans Pineapple Sage

Pineapple Sage dies back to the ground each year, but returns larger with more fragrant leaves late in spring, so late that sometimes it is thought lost. Once it breaks dormancy, it grows rapidly and can reach six feet or more depending on conditions. The lipstick red flowers are stunning in early fall and attract hummingbirds.

The long tubular flowers can also be used as a fresh garnish in sautés or a colorful confetti like addition to salads. Even though the leaves have little culinary value, they smell fantastic. Be sure to rub the leaves often to enjoy Pineapple Sages unique aroma.

 

 

Tangerine Scented Marigold
(Tagetes lemmonii)

Tagetes lemmonii Tangerine Scented Marigold

The fragrant freshness of spring in late autumn is the gift of Tangerine Scented Marigold. A bold bloomer with aromatic foliage and hundreds of bright yellow flowers that make a stunning display.

 

Additional Plants for the Fragrant Herb Garden Zone 8: Chives, Lovage, Tansy, Catnip, All Buddleia, Bee Balms, Cistus, Culinary Oreganos, Lavenders, Mints, Salvia officinalis, Thymes and Rosemarys in our catalog, Rue, Winter Savory, Conehead Thyme, Curry Plant, Costmary, Epazote, Feverfew, Cat Thyme, French Tarragon, Miniature Roses, Mint Scented Lion's Tail, Wormwood, Southernwood, Bronze Fennel, Mounding Marjoram, Attar of Rose Geranium, Citrosa Geranium, Lemon Balm Geranium, Nutmeg Geranium, Rober's Lemon Rose, Geranium, Village Hill Oak Geranium, Mint Scented Rose Geranium, White Sage, Mexican Blue Sage, Cleveland Sage, Maraschino Cherry Salvia, Black Sage, Bog Sage, Pink Savory, Mint Scented Marigold, Citrus Scented Marigold and Society Garlic.

 
Books to read on this subject:

Illustrated Encyclopedia of Herbs
By Claire Kowalchik
Scent In Your Garden
By Stephen Lacey
 

Cassell's Directory
of Scented Plants

By David Squire
Fragrant Gardens

By Jane Taylor

The Zone 8
 Fragrant Herb Garden Six Pack

$32.95

Quantity

 

The Zone 8
Fragrant Herb
Garden Kit
$44.95

Quantity

 

Substitutions in Herb Garden Six Packs are made with appropriate plants when necessary. 

 

Have some real fun and purchase our Zone 8 Fragrant Herb Garden Kit which includes The Zone 8 Fragrant Herb Garden Six Pack and the book The Scented Home. Makes a great gift!

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