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A nickel worth of scents


A couple of years ago, while I was on my way up to a meeting at Monticello, I was walking by one of my favorite blooming trees, the Mimosa Tree, and saw a woman lying on her back motionless with her eyes closed.  It was one of those moments when your first thought is to worry about the person’s health, but you first voice your concern in an innocuous manner. 

“It’s an amazing smell,” I announced as I passed to see if she would respond. 

“Yes, I know,” she said without opening her eyes.  “That’s why I’m here.”

Blossoms of a Mimosa Tree at MonticelloI’ve worked at Monticello for a number of years and have learned when to seek out some of the best scents. Here’s my top five along with when and where to find them:

  • Fringe Tree, mid-April to early May, just a little to the west of the North Pavilion below the Winding Flower Walk (you can also find some in the Thomas Jefferson Parkway)
  • Flowering Tobacco, early evenings late May through the Fall at various locations along the Winding Flower Walk.
  • ‘Painted Lady’ Sweet Pea, mid-May to mid-June at two locations on either side of the Winding Flower Walk.
  • Mimosa Tree (image of blossoms above), late mid-June to early July at the south end of Mulberry Row and the Vegetable Garden Terrace
  • Tuberose, starting anywhere from late July to late September and lasting until late October, early November on the western side of Winding Flower Walk.


Legacy NID: 


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