• The Fragrance-Free Pink

    11th August 2011Stephanie's BlogStephanie Donaldson

    Bred for vase life not fragrance

    I learnt this week that plant breeders have no interest in breeding either dianthus or freesias for fragrance, because the strength of the scent relates directly to the length of a flower’s life.  The biggest market for both is as cut flowers, so they are looking for something that lasts as long as possible in a vase.  I had never thought about the relationship between length of life and fragrance before – a strong scent attracts insects faster, pollination takes place and the flower can die.  Fortunately old-fashioned pinks are still deliciously fragrant – varieties like Doris, Mrs. Sinkins and Gran’s Favourite. I’m growing my own freesias this year and will be interested to see how fragrant they are.

    Mrs Sinkins is deliciously clove-scented