Dog days

Rosa multiflora - on the very invasive list but smells like heavenThe heat broke yesterday and I think we’re all enjoying today’s reminder about why it’s worth every cent to live in or at least visit coastal New England – it’s all about the sea breeze! The wind off the water is deliciously cool and perfumed right now with salty beach roses (Rosa rugosa), the awfully invasive yet lovely-when-it-blooms Rosa multiflora and little sips of one of our other favorites invasives – Japanese honeysuckle (Lonicera japonica). I feel like I’m walking around nose first. Even during our record breaking heat wave, when inhaling was physically uncomfortable I wanted to be sniffing and smelling and breathing deeply. Nino - my editorial assistant lying down on the jobI have a feeling that the term “Dog days” refers to wanting to lie on the floor with tongues lolling but it’s just occurred to me that it could be about catching summer scents the way my new editorial assistant noses around when we go for walkies (Everyone, meet Nino! Nino, this is everyone). I feel like I could close my eyes as we walk and know exactly where I am:

Under the Japanese snowbell (Styrax japonicum ‘Pink Chimes’)

Styrax japonicus ‘Pink Chimes’ - Japanese snow bell

Strolling by the Fringe tree (Chionanthus virginicus)

Chionanthus virginicus - Fringe tree

Passing by the sweet peas (slowly)

Sweet peas - Painted Lady was the first to bloom

Resting near the Sundrops (Oenothera fruticosa)

Oenothera fruticosa - Sundrops

And working in the (peaking!) Rose Garden – today we put down a layer of buckwheat hull mulch – it’s looking very elegant and smells divine!

A sweet Rose Garden combo - Morning Has Broken, Lilian and Pat Austen

All of this olfactory stimulation is stirring my desire for more-more-more scents galore in my own garden (I have a R. rugosa and a lot of lavender coming into bloom soon but most of the rest is for looks so far). But I wonder can there ever be too much? What have you planted for scent this time of year in your garden? Do you have any clashes or is it a symphony of sniffs?

5 thoughts on “Dog days

  1. Oh, I envy you the sea breezes right about now. It’s unbearably hot here. However, the garden is still fragrant. Not so much with flowers as with foliage, especially the clean, sagey scents of salvias and artemisia.

    mmm…. I’ll bet the heat cooks the scent right out of those herbs! Stay cool, Pam. -kris

  2. Thankfully the heat has broken and a bit of rain this weekend has made the plants smile again! Love your ‘Pink Chimes’. I just put a picture of mine on for bloom day. The flowers seem smaller to me this year and less pink! What is up with that?

    Layanee, That’s strange because everything here seems to be blooming bigger better more than ever – even the white Styrax isn’t lopsided this year (remember you noticed that last year?). And maybe the pink was bleached out of yours during the heat… Ours might be a shade lighter too… -kris

  3. Oh, I forgot to mention that while I love the smell of roses and have some David Austin’s freshly planted, the scent of dill is a thrill and I planted some of that in the garden to enjoy on hot, humid evenings.

    mmm dill… Once I had a batch of chocolate cookie dough that tasted like the dill we were keeping in our fridge. Ever since, the two flavors remind me of each other! (it was an odd combo) -kris

  4. Oooh… Nino is such a cutie! Is Nino a “he” or a “she,” and does Nino belong to Blithewold or come to work with you every day? Either day, you’re lucky to have such a smart-looking editorial assistant. :)

    Kim, Nino is my boy and so far has just hung out with me during my writing afternoons. He knows how to spell “arrroowrufffuff” so of course I think he’s quite handy to have close by! -kris

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