Five Aromatic Flowering Herbs for Scented Designer Gardens

Historically herbs were kept away from ornamental garden borders, restricted to containers or herb gardens where space is restricted and plants grown for culinary purposes. If you have ever grown fresh herbs in your garden or windowsill then you will be aware that through regular gathering of aromatic leaves, flowers and seeds, herbs thrive.

Let to their own devices many herbs take on a flowing habit that lends itself to informal garden planting, softening harsh lines and adding a touch of prarie style planting to otherwise formal borders.

I have chosen Five Aromatic Flowering Herbs that I endorse for use in Scented Garden Designs that lend themselves well to the competion from fast growing perennials and shrubs. Herbs are easily rasied by seeds sown indoors or direct once frost has past.

Buy our most popular flowering garden herbs here >> 

Dill widely grown for highly scented aromatic foliage, often used to flavor pickles, salads and breads the Dill if allowed to flower sends up strong rigid hollow stems crowned with umbels of yellow stars that are loved by pollintors and nectar searching bees.

Camomile more often considered a calming tea infusion is actually a fun and easy to grow herb, fun for children and family frolics. Camomile can be grown amongst paving, gravel paths or even as a low maintenance lawn. The annual flowering camomile makes a great front of the border addition to any border, trimming the plant after flowering will encouarge fresh bushy growth and scented foliage when bruised.

Bright blue flowers are largely overlooked in the herb garden, where softer shades and silvers appear to domiante but let’s not forget the handsome hyssop that attracts insects, bees and moths from far and wide. Hyssop is a fast grown perennial herb that makes agreat front to mid border spreading semi-woody perennial.

Cumin a fast growing annual that offers plate sized umbels of creamy white, frothy flowers that carry a delicate cpw parsely scent. Grown largely for the seeds that dry in the late Summer sun and have great ornamental at the front to mid section of your garden mixed border planting. Set seed easily be sure to harvest dried seeds for cooking and keep seedlings in check.

Oregano a widely grown herb that deserves a place in any sunny garden, making a neat edge or planted in bold groups the pretty pink flushed flowers of the Oregano attract insects and pollinators to your garden. Plant as an edge to garden paths or amongst vegetables, perennials or shrubs for a groundcovering perennial flower that lasts all Summer long. Pick oregano fresh for that special italian meal or dry and save your own dried herbs for cooking.

Five easy to grow herbs for garden borders and pots would not be complete without number 6 an easy to grow perennial onion or Chives. Choose Garlic chives, for white flowers and a garlic flavor, common chives for the spring onion taste and rose pink flowers loved by bees or for the back of the border pick Giant Siberian chives in rose to plae pink, larger flowers and blue/grey leaves for a stronger flavor.

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There are of course many more herbs you can add to garden borders, some have been associated with mixed garden planting for many years. Roses gardens would not be complete without atleast a few lavender or rosemary plants, curry plants and santolina grown for the silver fine leaves and wormwood or Artemsia for it’s aromatic scent and grey finely cut leaves. Bronze Fennel popular in gardens makes a stately plant when allowed to flower and dwarfed by Angelica a large dominant herb with large waxy leaves and requires room to grow.

My top five easy to grow herbs can be raised from seed, planted as 9cm plants or plugs, however you choice to grow when planning your garden borders instead of rushing to the garden centre to purcahse hybridised tropical showy annuals, think about native flowers and annuals that invite wildlife into your garden, establishing a thriving eco-system based around just a few garden plants. Try our most popular flowering garden herbs here >> 

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Stephen Pryce-Lea

Head Gardener and International Horticultural Consultant




“It’s a beautiful thing when a career and a passion grow together, when you find it in a Garden it’s like finding Paradise“

iGrowHort – A Head Gardener’s Horticultural Journey of love, life and learning.




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About Head Gardener 291 Articles
Award winning, 40 something year old professional plantsman and horticulturalist with National Trust, private parks and estate management background. My vast plant knowledge and hands on techinical experience, afforded me the opportunity to work in various horticultural landscapes, in the UK, USA & Eastern Europe. Having worked in both garden retail & the design service industry gave me the practical diversity and managerial skill set, required for running a large prestigious gardens and stately homes. I strongly believe knowledge is to be shared and have worked closely with people and staff of all ages and abilities keen to develop their passion for gardening, including groups of children, special needs and adults. I have hosted guided walks, talks and tours for those keen to learn about cultivated and wild plants, garden development, history and design. As an member of the NNCPG and National Trust, I am actively involved in the preservation of several important plant collections both in public and private gardens throughout the UK. “It’s a beautiful thing when a career and a passion grow together, in a garden it’s paradise” Follow @IGrowHort on GardenTags. Stephen is passionate about gardening as Head Gardener with a team of ten staff he manages a prestigious Cheshire country estate of 55 acres, inc wild flower meadows, woodland, organic kitchen and formal gardens. Follow Stephen today”

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