Sweet White Things

Tropical Flowers

It’s a little funny for me to write this post as it is all about smell – something that doesn’t really translate well over the internet. Yet! But here we go –

As a life-long flower fan, I’ve made some observations about these beauties over the years. Especially here on Maui where the weather permits them to grow and blossom year-round. One observation sticks with me:  the white flowers seem to have a stronger, sweeter, brighter smell than any others.  Is it because they are making up for lack of color in an effort to attract birds and bees? Maybe. In any case, it’s always a joy for me to stop and smell their scents.

White Flowers on Maui

Here on Maui we have many varieties of these sweet little things that have led me to this conclusion.Many of them I have noticed when I’m out on a run. Their pungent sweet smells drift into the air and give me a little boost of refreshment as I go by. Here are just a few:

Mock Orange or Murraya Paniculata, commonly called Orange Jessamine.

Mock Orange or Murraya Paniculata, commonly called Orange Jessamine.

Jasmine, known in Hawaii as Pikake

Jasmine, known in Hawaii as Pikake

Stephanotis

Stephanotis

The very sweet Tuberose, or Polianthes Tuberosa.

The very sweet Tuberose, or Polianthes Tuberosa.

I can’t remember the name of this one! It grows on a hedge that also has large red berries.

I can’t remember the name of this one! It grows on a hedge that also has large red berries.

Tahitian Gardenia or Gardenia Taitensis, known in Hawaii as Tiaré Flower

Tahitian Gardenia or Gardenia Taitensis, known in Hawaii as Tiaré Flower

Gardenia, my life-long absolute favorite!

Gardenia, my life-long absolute favorite!

I’ve tried to test this theory with flowers of multiple colors. Is a white rose sweeter than a red one? How about white ginger vs. yellow?  My results have been inconclusive; maybe my nose isn’t sensitive enough! Have you noticed this about white flowers? Or maybe it’s just me! 🙂

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5 thoughts on “Sweet White Things

      • I can grow millions of flowers in NY but my plumeria did not blossom. When in Hawaii, I wanted a lei of them but was leaving to go home. I thought it was the sweetest smelling flower ever. I have English roses that smell sweet but you cannot compare the plumeria to a rose.

  1. Pingback: Six of My Favorite Things about Maui – A Kamaaina’s Perspective | Mamala O Maui

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