Scent Diary : The Beautiful Scent of Sweet Peas

What a beautiful fragrance do sweet peas have! Until I grew these flowers in my garden, I didn’t realize the full dimensions of their scent. In perfumery, a sweet pea accord is a common one in vintage-style fragrances, but I never enjoyed its cloying powderiness. Real sweet peas have a powdery scent, but this makeup-like note is uplifted by rose, pear and violet accents. Are you familiar with this fragrance? Do you have perfumes that resemble it?

For those curious to grow sweet peas themselves, I can tell you that they are not too capricious. They sprouted easily, but it took a few warm weeks for the plants to shot up and take over their corner of the flower bed. I bought a mix of different colors and it was a surprise to discover the hues of the blossoms as they opened up–magenta, purple, lilac, white, peach.

Scent Diary is a place to write your observations about the scents around you. Whether you write down 1 recollection or 10 matters less than simply reminding yourself to smell. You can add as many comments as you wish. You can comment today or over the course of the week; this thread will always be open. Of course, do share what perfume you’re wearing or what particularly good scented products you’ve discovered.

While looking through my articles, I found this article that I wrote a few years ago but that still remains popular and often-read: A to Z Tips for Enjoyable, Affordable and Rewarding Perfume Hobby. If you have any tips to add, I’d love to hear them.

Photography by Bois de Jasmin



  • Marie: I have grown and adore the scent of sweet peas and have searched high and low for a fragrance that comes close to it. Does anyone have recommendations? August 21, 2023 at 9:50am Reply

    • Kimberly: Marie, have you tried Goutal’s Chat Perche? August 21, 2023 at 11:29am Reply

      • Marie: No, Kimberly, I haven’t but surely will give it a try. Thank you! August 21, 2023 at 2:02pm Reply

    • Johanob: Yes.If you can find a bottle:Gaultier Fleur du Mâle!It’s like putting your nose in a freshly picked bunch of sweatpeas! August 21, 2023 at 4:05pm Reply

      • Marie: Ooooh, that sounds divine! I will look into it. Thank you! August 21, 2023 at 7:49pm Reply

    • Victoria: None from me, but I’m reading other comments attentively. August 28, 2023 at 6:39am Reply

  • Donna: Sweet peas have such an ethereal scent! Our Spring this year was long and cool, instead of too warm/hot, so I actually got blossoms. Not enough for enfleurage, as hoped, but enough to bring indoors and revel in the scent. August 21, 2023 at 10:11am Reply

    • Victoria: It’s remarkable in its complexity. August 28, 2023 at 6:39am Reply

  • Kimberly: It is perfect timing that you are sharing your thoughts today concerning the beauty of the sweet pea flower. I have been wearing Goutal’s Chat Perche for the past three days. It is a soft floral perfume that features the fragrances of lemon flower and sweet pea. It could be suitable for a young girl as well as a mature woman. There are so many Goutal fragrances that are unique and special in their own way. Chat Perche has become another favorite. August 21, 2023 at 11:27am Reply

    • Aurora: Chat Perché sounds really good. August 21, 2023 at 1:23pm Reply

    • Marie: I can’t wait to try it! August 21, 2023 at 2:05pm Reply

    • Victoria: Onto my list it goes. August 28, 2023 at 6:39am Reply

  • Alityke: Mum always grew sweet peas up bamboo poles made into a tall fence like structure against a wall to protect them from the wind. They make fabulous cut flowers. On a recent Gardeners World Rachel De Thame did a piece on floral arrangements & the guest recommended sweet pea foliage in arrangements too. August 21, 2023 at 12:03pm Reply

    • Victoria: I will take a look at the article. August 28, 2023 at 6:40am Reply

  • Aurora: Sweet peas are so spectacular with their long stems. I can’t think of a realistic sweet pea Scent, l’Artisan Parfumeur ought to try. August 21, 2023 at 1:27pm Reply

  • abby: The only thing I can think of that has sweet pea as a dominant note, is the long departed Floret by Antonia’s Flowers. Very sweet and long lasting, at least on me. August 21, 2023 at 3:17pm Reply

    • SoSuSam: Oh my goodness, I loved Floret once upon a time but had since completely forgotten about it. Thanks for the memory. 🙂 August 21, 2023 at 5:54pm Reply

    • Marie: I’ve never heard of it! I’ll have to do a little research. Thank you! August 21, 2023 at 7:51pm Reply

    • Victoria: That was such a wonderful perfume. August 28, 2023 at 6:40am Reply

  • Rickyrebarco: I have never smelled sweet pea flowers, but I hope to sniff them someday. August 21, 2023 at 5:56pm Reply

    • Victoria: You’re in for a treat. August 28, 2023 at 6:40am Reply

  • SoSuSam: Jo Loves has a fragrance called Fresh Sweet Peas. I haven’t tried it so I can’t say whether it actually reflects the scent of sweet peas, but perhaps someone else knows? August 21, 2023 at 5:58pm Reply

    • Marie: It sounds promising! Hmmm… Thanks for mentioning it. August 21, 2023 at 7:52pm Reply

    • Victoria: I’m adding it to my list. Thank you. August 28, 2023 at 6:41am Reply

  • Andy: Sweet peas are challenging to grow where I live, but I undertake the effort and inconvenience every year. They’re able to stop me in my tracks, just to marvel at the ruffled petals and tissue paper colors, and drink up the scent for those few short weeks. If scent is what I’m after, my favorite varieties are Matucana or its older form, Cupani, as well as the aptly named High Scent. Royal Family is a mix that’s easy to find, and offers an exuberant range of colors and good scent, too. There are many good varieties though, and even many that are not known for scent I find to be very fragrant.

    I’ve never found a convincing sweet pea note in any perfume, perhaps because their honeyed, orange blossom-esque scent strikes a delicate balance, at once familiar and distinctly unique. It could be the power of suggestion (the list of notes), but Jour d’Hermes is perhaps the one perfume which starts to evoke sweet pea for me, probably due to its watercolor abstractness. My first experience of “sweet pea,” before I ever smelled the flowers, was Bath and Body Works Sweet Pea, probably discontinued, a powdery fruity floral that I seem to remember having an impressively explosive sillage. My memory of it is certainly nothing like the flower, though. August 23, 2023 at 12:28pm Reply

    • Victoria: I bought a mix this time, but next year I would like to try specific varieties. And yes, it’s hard to capture that rich scent in a perfume. August 28, 2023 at 6:44am Reply

  • Joce: Why don’t you try “pois de senteur” de Caron? It was created by Ernest Daltroff the funder of the House of Caron perfumes. It was initially called Pois de Senteur de chez moi meaning: sweat peas from my home. It is still available on Caron website on extract perfume. Very powdery with a slight green tinge and a warm bitter base but oh m’y goodness what a treat! August 23, 2023 at 12:52pm Reply

    • Victoria: That’s a beauty, but it’s been a while since I wore it. August 28, 2023 at 6:44am Reply

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