When I was a baby girl, my grandmother had a job in a gardener’s greenhouse and I have a vague memory of walking between long planters tables and smelling the flowers. I especially remember huge bouquets of carnations and freesias, and pots with ferns.
I think I was 4 or 5 years old at that time, and don’t remember, whether I went to see my grandmother at the greenhouse more than one time, but it made a very big impression on me.
In the opinion of many, carnations are graveyard flowers, but they and freesias still are amongst my favorites. They both stem from a time before people bred flowers only for their looks, and before most flowers lost their smell.
For me the smell is the most important feature of a flower, before shape and color, and I never buy flowers that don’t smell. Right now it’s time for one of my absolute favorites – narcissus. In Denmark we mostly buy them with the bulbs and in pots, but in the Netherlands they sell them as cut flowers, and when I lived there I bought several bouquets of the blue ones every week between November and May. As I said – they are one of my favorites, and they really lighten up the dark part of the year for me.
Other favorites of mine are lilacs, lilies and violets, again mostly for their smell.
Years ago roses were amongst my favorites as well, but now I only want roses from the garden, because I’ve seen a German documentary about how most cut roses sold and bought in Europe are grown under terrible conditions in Africa, where the workers and the nature are poisoned big time.
Also when it comes to potted plants I definitely prefer those with a smell like scented geraniums for instance or herbs like basil, and I still love entering greenhouses, and when I do, I think of my grandma.