Fragrance of Datura - Knowledgebase Question

Fair Lawn, NJ
Question by DTambe
September 8, 1998
All the information I searched on datura states that the fragrance is either putrid or smells like "burnt chocolate". I encountered what looks to be a datura in town and it smells very sweet and pleasant. Are there diferent varieties to look out for?


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Answer from NGA
September 8, 1998

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Datura (Brugmansia) is related to jimsonweed, and some varieties grow rank, with the flowers giving off pungent odors. Others are more refined, and the flowers produce a pleasant fragrance. The cultivated kinds include Brugmansia candida, with trumpet-shaped white flowers that have a wonderful fragrance - especially at night. Then there's Brugmansia sanguinea, with orange red flowers, Brugmansia versicolor with white or peach colored flowers, and Brugmansia suaveolens that produces large, white flowers that are less fragrant than B. candida. So, the answer to your question is, yes, there are different Datura's, and yes, they have different degrees of fragrance. That's the beauty of gardening - you can choose the plants that you like best!

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