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Gardenias and White Flowers

Do you have a favorite flower?

Mine is the gardenia. I adore the tightly wound petals, that thick leathery texture, and the shiny, deep and lime green foliage. Don’t even get me started on the intoxicating aroma.

When I was a child, my mom, had 3 large gardenia bushes right off of our patio and when they were in bloom, the whole area smelled of this sweet feminine fragrance with slightly green undertones. I could not help myself, I would pick one of these pretty white flowers and put it behind my ear and I’d carry this lovely smell with me wherever I went. Ahh, such lovely memories.

I have an area in my backyard that is ideal for the same trio of gardenia bushes but alas, something is not right because I cannot get them to thrive. I’m open to feedback from any advanced gardenia growers out there!

Last year, I splurged on this large gardenia tree. We enjoyed it so much that we carefully wintered it over and have watched it grow and bloom all season. For now, this single tree has calmed my craving to recreate one of my favorite childhood memories. Have I ever mentioned that my mother, is a very gifted gardener?

As long as I’m sharing, my favorite fragrance, or my signature, is Chanel Gardenia. This is the perfume I reach for when I’m getting dressed up, going out, or want to really feel like myself. Have you ever smelled this amazing scent?

It was created in 1925 by Mademoiselle and Ernest Beaux, the first Directors of Chanel Fragrance. Coco Chanel adored white flowers, they were her emblem. She had one tucked into a buttonhole, a lapel or on her hat all the times. She loved the camellia but camellias have no smell so she imagined a fragrance in it’s image which she named Gardenia.

The fragrance is described as a “fresh and sensual nectar featuring accents of jasmine and orange blossom for a lush, floral trail.” Check it out, you might love it too!

Gardenias have short stems and don’t last long when they are picked, only a few hours. I discovered a trick and this will work with any short-stemmed flower. I cut a large leaf from my hydrangea and I create a barrier between the small vase of water and the underside of the petals with the large leaf. Then I poke whole in the leaf and push the short gardenia stem through to the water. I’ve discovered that when I keep them like this, the blooms will last up to 5 days!

One of life’s luxuries in my book is having fresh flowers in the house. I almost always select white flowers when I pick them up at the market. White flowers seem to blend so well with my interior colors and I consider them a peaceful element in my home. I rarely buy greenery at the market, opting for sprigs of ivy or herbs from my garden to mix with the blooms as you see in this simple arrangement.

I’ve been sharing my favorites all month long to celebrate my August birthday and I’ve got one more post coming next week that I know your going to love.

It’s one of my favorite Provençal dishes! I can’t help myself! I’m so excited about returning to Provence for the first time in 4 years. I’ll be off to France next week so be sure and follow along on Instagram and Facebook!

If you think you might like to travel with me to this stunning region where the people are warm, the food is outstanding, and the scenery will astound you, get on the waitlist NOW. Details will be coming within 4-5 weeks for 2024 travel!

Be sure and leave your gardenia gardening tips in the comments and tell me YOUR favorite flower!

See you soon!



Reader interactions

6 Replies to “Gardenias and White Flowers”

  1. Hi Lorie
    My favourite flowers are peonies and lilacs but now I’m tempted to get a gardenia tree next summer! Everything you present is so beautiful! Merci! 🌹


    1. Hi Charlene!!!
      Great to hear from you, I love peonies too!! Especially the pink ones!
      Thank you for your kind words!


  2. This is also a favorite flower of mine! Can hardly wait for our trip next week. I’m packed and ready.


    1. Yay!! I know it’s so exciting! My clothes are laid out on my bed right now!!!
      It’s cooled off some!!


  3. Hi Lorie! Loving this article and so looking forward to Paris April 2024 with you!! Gardenia is also my fav flower! I had a small intimate wedding almost 30 years ago at my new inlaw’s home and they had a large beautiful gardenia bush that flowered prolifically. We took vintage crystal bowls and stemware and “floated” gardenias in water all over the room along with lots of candles and greenery and the smell was intoxicating just as you describe! I am looking forward to looking for that Chanel parfum and all the delights I know Paris will offer! Merci!!


    1. Sherri
      Thanks for sharing that. I bet that was so lovely!!! Gardenias are so elegant! Remind me and I’ll be sure you have a moment with the Chanel Gardenia fragrance- I predict it will be love at first sniff!!


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Lorie Fangio | A Taste of Paris

Meet Lorie Fangio

Lorie Fangio is a teaching chef and the founder of A Taste of Paris culinary excursions. She shares her extensive knowledge of French food & culture through cooking classes, regular TV appearances, local publications, and speaking engagements. She is an award-winning food & lifestyle blogger with a zest for gathering people around a table.

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