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hoya bella fragrant?

17 years ago


I've read in some catalogs that Hoya bella is fragrant, smelling like candy. I have seen some plants labelled as H. bella over the last 10 years and couldn't detect a trace of fragrance. Can someone with more hoya knowledge shed some light on this?

Thanks and Happy New Year!

Comments (8)

  • 17 years ago

    Bella is one of those that is sometimes fragrant, other times not so much - for me anyway. I find carnosa to be the same way. I've always wondered why some Hoyas are fragrant sometimes and not other times. One that blooms constantly for me - tsangii or DS-70 - is one I have never detected a hint of fragrance from. Yet some say it IS fragrant. Could it be that some people's noses are more atuned to scent? Could it be what we are feeding them, or what is in the water we're giving them? The amount or intensity of the sun? Wish I knew!

    Denise in Omaha

  • 17 years ago

    If you garden for fragrance, then you know that so much depends on (among other things) the climatic conditions, clone you have, and your personal nose. I found out only too well about the latter last year when my hoya cummingiana bloomed and smelled downright offensive to me--like asphalt and old tires or something--but to nearly eveyone else I quizzed (which was everyone I could grab), it smelled like coconuts or fruit.

    That said, I bet I know the catalog you're talking about. I have their variegated one, and to me it has a very mild but very pleasant, fresh scent...primroses, maybe? Also seems to depend on bella's own mood, like Denise said.

    Nearly all hoyas are fragrant only at evening or night, and I can't remember if bella has any day fragrance or not.

    Wish I could be more help, and please do tell us if you order that company's green bella and find that children really do ask if someone's eating candy! Is that the one??

    Happy New Year from me, too!! 'Mare

  • 17 years ago

    yes, Mare, that's the very catelogue. What did you do with your H. Cummingiana, since it smelled to bad to you? I was thinking of getting that one myself. I've heard that it smells gorgeous. Go figure. where do you buy yours from? I haven't grown hoyas in years and am now thinking of getting a few very select varieties that are fragrant.

    Happy New Year!

    Sally Mae

  • 17 years ago

    Gave that booger away! Shame, too, because it was such a pretty, different one. But please note it was ME and not the plant!! Almost everyone I asked thought it smelled good or at least not nasty like I did. It came from the same catalogue, which I think tends to have accurate descriptions and superior plants. Here's the final Cummingiana Scent tally from the original post, below.

    Just thought I'd add it's definitely me and not the particular plant. Did a "show & smell" poll at a garden club meeting and added that to family members, and here are the rough results:
    20%=Coconut, or coconut with maybe cloves (pleasant)
    40%=Citrus or citrus and something else (pleasant)
    30%=Not offensive but odd clove-like smell (neutral)
    10%=Weird gaggy chemical or rubber smell (negative)

    That's why I usually have to try them myself. My favorite hoya scent, hands down, is obscura. That one smells to me like gardenia and Fruit Loops. Heavenly! :)

    Here is a link that might be useful: Cummingiana thread

  • 17 years ago

    Hey Mare:

    Sounds like you nailed it again :-) H. bella for me only has only ever had a very mild delicate scent which has never wafted for me. This has been regardless of quantity of flowers present or time of day, humidity, temperature, etc.

    H. obscura is still my all-time favorite hoya for fragrance. And looks. And ease of growth. And blooming ability, lol! Just one open umbel of flowers scents most of my house and puts me in the best mood ever. Gardenias and fruit loops? Yes! It smells so good to me that sometimes I wish I could eat it! :-)

    Have you been growing any other fragrant houseplants lately? Neomarica gracilis (smells just like peonies) and Sansevieria parva (a scent of hyacinths so strong and piercing it could knock you off your feet) are my two other favorite, low-care, easy-as-can-be fragrant houseplants lately. Best part of this for me is that all three of these plants (H. obscura included) are true houseplants which do not sulk or pout during the winter months.

  • 17 years ago

    Scent is a very subjective quality. Hyacinths are a favorite of mine; my friend took one sniff and said, "Oooew, I don't like that smell!" Some plants have intermitten fragrance. A honeysuckle in my yard is incredible at night but has NO fragrance during the day. My witch hazel tree has little scent if you walk up and sniff it but is incredible drifting around the yard.

  • 17 years ago

    Lol IspahanÂYouÂre the one who originally told me about obscura, and were you ever right! I can smell even the tiniest flower cluster before seeing it and just want to stand and breathe it in. And frequently do! "Underrated" is right. Why donÂt catalogs give this one the praise it deserves? It even seems to bloom off and on all year.

    Glad you mentioned that bella doesnÂt waft for you. DoesnÂt for me, either.

    Was a little surprised to read in another post that you like your lacunosa, because mine has a slight off-note. DoesnÂt bother me too much, but your nose seems more refined than mine. You mentioned that yours was a form from Lankawi IslandÂdo you think that one is better than the others?

    Your fragrant houseplant list has been worth its weight in gold because IÂve found you were dead-on with all IÂve tried so far. Neomarica is one of the last couple I havenÂt tried yet, but hope to get one this spring. Glad to hear what you said about parva, because I have one (with a questionable I.D.) thatÂs still small. Hope itÂs an easy bloomerÂ!?!

    My latest love is a little pink cyclamen with a delicate tea rose fragrance. DoesnÂt waft much, but have found thatÂs one that will bloom continuously as long as itÂs kept moist. Has to be pitched for summer, but you've gotta love a plant that seems thrilled with Midwestern winters!

  • 17 years ago

    I have two huge hoya plants that are now 30 years old and another that I started a year or so ago. When they bloom, the scent is strong at night but almost no scent in the daytime.

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