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Do you love the smell of fresh flowers or the aroma that wafts through your home as you cook with herbs? Smell might not be the first thing we think of when it comes to gardening, but it’s actually a super powerful way to bring joy to our gardens! In fact, our sense of smell has strong associations with our long-term memories and emotions. Today, we’re chatting with my friend Amy Anthony, a certified clinical aromatherapist and aromatic gardener, who will share her expertise on how aromatic gardening can cultivate joy, calm, and memories through scent.

 

In this episode, we learn:

  • [05:08] How Amy’s passion for plants led to her expertise in aromatherapy
  • [06:46] How the process of obtaining an aromatherapy certification works
  • [09:33] How scents can trigger memories through the olfactory system
  • [14:28]  Is the connection between the olfactory system and the brain due to the nose’s proximity?
  • [16:57] Where can you find high-quality potting mix and fertilizer for your garden?
  • [19:06] Are you searching for personalized and premium wind chimes for Mother’s Day?
  • [22:37] What is aromatic gardening and which plants are its focus?
  • [24:54] Various plants that repel pests or deer
  • [26:26] Can you easily grow aromatic plants, distill their oil, and use it at home?
  • [27:41] Why you should add aromatic plants to your garden 
  • [30:57] Amy grows aromatic plants to make tea, hydrosols, and tinctures
  • [34:51] What are the recommended methods for brewing lemon balm tea?
  • [36:56] What’s your go-to resource for identifying plant diseases, preventing animal damage, and setting up a successful garden?
  • [37:52] Amy’s recommended plants to promote relaxation
  • [40:09] Which plants are ideal for an afternoon energy boost?
  • [42:31] Which plants promote connection with oneself or others in the context of aromatherapy or sensuality?
  • [45:50] What non-culinary herbs should you try growing?
  • [49:20] Which staple plant is recommended for aromatic gardening?
  • [53:04] Where can you find Amy on social media?

 

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Meet Amy Anthony!

Amy Anthony is a certified clinical aromatherapist and aromatic gardening expert. She’s got a diverse background in aromatherapy, herbalism, gardening, composting, and artisanal distillation, so she really knows her stuff when it comes to engaging the senses in gardening. Amy has made it her life’s work to explore the amazing properties of plants, including the power of scent to influence our emotions and memories.

 

The Science of Scent

Amy shares that our olfactory system (that’s the fancy term for our sense of smell) has a strong connection with the part of our brain that processes long-term memories and emotions. Certain smells can trigger specific memories or feelings, which is why aromatherapy uses scents to make us feel certain ways and provide therapeutic benefits!

 

Creating an Aromatic Garden

There are several ways to incorporate aromatic plants into your gardening, both indoors and outdoors. Here are some plants to get you started:

Herbs

  • Basil – With its strong, sweet smell and many culinary uses, basil is a must-have for an aromatic garden. Its scent comes from essential oils in the leaves, which are released when touched or rubbed.
  • Mint – With so many varieties and unique smells, mint is a fantastic addition to any aromatic garden!
  • Rosemary – This evergreen herb has sturdy branches with needle-like leaves that release an amazing, refreshing scent when touched. It’s perfect for an aromatic border or for adding a Mediterranean vibe to your garden.
  • Thyme – Earthy and woodsy, thyme is low-growing, making it great as a ground cover or filler between stepping stones. Just give it a gentle touch to release its scent.

 

Flowers

  • Hoya – Often grown as a houseplant, Hoya is an elegant, sweet-smelling addition to any indoor space.
  • Orchids – Not all orchids are fragrant, but many species have beautifully scented flowers! Vanilla orchids, for example, have a subtle, sweet smell and are grown for their unique blooms, captivating scent, and vanilla production.
  • Lilacs – These spring favorites have dense clusters of small, fragrant flowers that fill the air with a sweet, unforgettable scent.
  • Roses – No aromatic garden is complete without roses! With countless varieties that differ in color, shape, and fragrance, roses provide a delightful sensory experience.

 

Shrubs and Trees

  • Jasmine – Jasmine’s intensely fragrant, white or yellow flowers are a staple of many aromatic gardens!
  • Eucalyptus – The silver-blue, rounded foliage of eucalyptus trees releases a refreshing, almost medicinal aroma when crushed, adding visual interest and a soothing scent.
  • Magnolias – These stunning trees have large, glossy leaves and fragrant blooms that range from sweet to citrusy. They’re a fabulous aromatic addition to urban and rural gardens alike.

 

Reliving Memories Through Aromatic Gardening

Scents can take us back in time, reminding us of cherished memories. Maybe the smell of geraniums reminds you of your grandparent’s greenhouse, or the aroma of basil takes you back to your mom’s garden.

Aromatic gardening can help create positive emotions and memories. By growing spaces full of sensory experiences, we can make a haven where our senses of sight, touch, and smell can be indulged.

Appreciating the scents around us and their connection to our emotions can make our gardening experiences even more amazing and boost our emotional well-being.

So go ahead and engage with the scents around you while gardening! It’s a simple but powerful way to connect with your senses, trigger memories, and enhance your mood. Transform your garden into an aromatic oasis and let your senses come alive as you indulge in the incredible scents that fill the air, plant friends!

 

Mentioned in our conversation:

 

Thank you to our episode sponsors:

Wind River Chimes

Bring more peace, serenity, and magic into your home with chimes. Wind River is a Virginia-based company creating premium handcrafted and hand-tuned wind chimes for over 35 years. If you are looking for a new way to grow joy in your life and find a moment of peace, a Wind River chime is the perfect addition for your home or garden. Plus, it’s a perfect personalized gift for your loved ones!

Visit windriverchimes.com and use code GROWINGJOY to receive free engraving on all Corinthian Bells wind chimes.

Espoma Organic

Make sure your aromatic herbs and plants are getting the right nutrients! Espoma Organic is dedicated to making safe indoor and outdoor gardening products for people, pets, and the planet. They have an amazing variety of high-quality, organic potting mixes, garden soil, fertilizers, and pest control products that are organic and eco-friendly. To top it all off, they have a huge sustainability commitment with a 100% solar powered plant, zero waste manufacturing and eco-friendly packaging.

Visit espoma.com to find your local Espoma dealer or check my Amazon storefront.

Quarto: The Vegetable Garden Problem Solver Handbook by Susan Mulvihill

This gardening season, arm yourself with The Vegetable Garden Problem Solver Handbook by veggie-growing guru Susan Mulvihill of YouTube Susans in the Garden! This book will become your go-to resource for all natural pesticide free solutions and troubleshooting for the gardening woes that will inevitably arise in your garden. The Vegetable Garden Problem Solver Handbook will help you properly identify over 28 bacterial and fungal diseases like powdery mildew, leaf spot, and potato scab, limit damage from plant eating animals and most importantly, it’ll help you set your garden up for success to actually prevent these problems from ever happening.

Check out The Vegetable Garden Problem Solver Handbook at your favorite local bookstore, quarto.comBarnes and Noble, or amazon.com.

 

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