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Do Peonies Smell Good? (Read This First!)

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If you are familiar with beautiful and attractive flowers, you might know peonies. Generally, people use peonies for different purposes.

Sometimes, people might grow them in their garden. Sometimes, they decorate their houses with these beautiful flowers. Among the different types of peonies, pink peonies are the most common.

Whenever we decorate our houses with flowers, we choose flowers that have a good aroma. So, you might be confused about whether peonies smell good or not.

Well, you have to know different species of peonies and their properties. Because different peonies might have different smells and appearances.

Do peonies smell good?

Generally, peonies smell good. Most of the species of peonies have a good aroma with a gorgeous outlook. That’s why people use peonies for decorating their houses. Moreover, people use peonies fragrant in candles, perfumes, and other things. But some species of peonies don’t have a good aroma.

However, peonies’ smell varies for different species. But most species have sweet smells or rosy smells. These attractive smells make peonies more demandable. Peonies have some specific types that are famous for their smells.

Generally, peony flowers have an excellent appearance with bold foliage. Besides, their delightful aroma adds more attraction to the flowers. Whenever we notice a beautiful flower, we expect the flower has a beautiful smell too.

Similarly, peonies also have a smell that attracts people to have flowers. Generally, peonies don’t need too much care to grow. That’s why people love to grow peonies in their gardens.

Peonies don’t have only one scent. Some peonies have strong scents and some have a little scent. But some peonies might also have bad smells for different reasons. In general, peonies have decent smells that impress people.

The smells of peonies also vary from time to time. Temperature, humidity, sunlight, etc., affect the smell and intensity of the smell of peony flowers.

For example, when the flowers are open in the morning first, the aroma is pretty intense. But after the sunlight is directly on the flower, the smell reduces at a moderate level.

However, peonies smell good overall. So, people also try to capture the smell into candles and perfumes. That’s why a lot of candles and perfumes are available with the smell of peonies. You might don’t identify instantly since the scent varies with different species.

But you can definitely have a great experience if you smell the fresh aroma of peonies from a garden.

Do all peonies smell good? Which peonies smell the best?

No, all peonies don’t smell good. But most of the peonies have a decent and delightfully fragrant. Generally, the double, white, and pick peonies have the most delightful smells. These peonies’ smells are also intense.

On the other hand, red and single peonies don’t have a strong smell. They might have a little or no smell at all. So, different varieties of peonies are available.

Among the peonies, Festiva Maxima is the most fragrant peonies. This peony flower is white in color and has a decent outlook. Moreover, the fragrant is so strong that you can store this fragrant for use later. 

On the other hand, the lactiflora cultivar is the most common peony flower with a moderate fragrant. However, peony flowers are always beautiful and full of scent.

These flowers are often used for decorative purposes. Besides, their scents make the environment aromatic and enjoyable. That’s why peonies are commonly used since most of the varieties have a good smell.

What does a peony smell like? Does peony smell like a rose?

A peony flower smells sweet. Most of the time, peonies have a moderate smell that is not irritating. Moreover, their different species have varieties of smells. But most of them have a rosy to citrusy smell. Some peonies might have a spicy smell.

Among all the peony flowers, some have so strong smell that some people might get irritation. But this strong smell is pretty rare.

Another interesting fact is that many peonies have a rose smell. That’s why it is pretty common to use peony fragrances in perfumes. In these perfumes, the peony flavor is soft, fresh, and feminine type.

Generally, pink peonies are the most common. These peonies smell sweet and rosy. Even you might experience the scent of pink peonies from a normal viewing distance. So, pink peonies have a strong scent.

Pink peonies sometimes look like roses and they also have a rosy smell. Sometimes, people might mistake them for roses. But peonies also have some differences from roses.

On the other hand, most red peonies are single flowers and they don’t have smells. So, red peonies might look gorgeous but they have little or no fragrance.

Which peonies are most fragrant? What kind of peonies smell very good?

You might know that several species of peonies are available. But all of them don’t have good smells. Moreover, some of them have pretty nice fragrances.

Generally, the white, pink, and double peony flowers are commonly fragrant. So, let’s see which peonies are most fragrant and what kind of peonies smell very good.

Festiva maxima:

Festiva maxima is one kind of peony flower that has a strong fragrance. Generally, the smell is similar to rose. But this peony is famous for its delightful smell. Moreover, candles and perfumes are made of this peony flower to store the fragrance.

Paeonia ‘Henry Bockstoce:

This type of peony flower is red in color and has a strong smell. Generally, we know that red peonies don’t contain fragrances. But this type of peony has a smell since this peony is a double flower. Even the fragrant is pretty intense.

Paeonia lactiflora ‘Duchesse de Nemours’:

This type of peony flower is one of the oldest peonies. Moreover, this peony is white in color and pretty attractive for its crown-shaped appearance.

Besides, Duchesse de Nemours peony flower has an intense smell that is noticeable from a visible distance. So, the fragrance is pretty strong.

Paeonia lactiflora ‘Hermione’:

Hermione peony flower is a pretty large and double flower. Generally, this peony has a pinkish appearance with a very fragrant nature.

You can notice the smell from a visible distance. Moreover, this peony is famous for its attractive smell. So, many people collect the scent and use it in perfumes.

Paeonia lactiflora ‘Philomele’:

This type of peony flower is also pinkish in color. The flower is medium-sized and the fragrant is pretty attractive. For the appearance and fragrance, people like to have these flowers in their gardens.

Do peonies smell like fish?

It might seem awkward, but sometimes peonies might smell like fish. Generally, most peonies smell great and delicious. But sometimes some reasons might be responsible for smelling the peonies like fish. Otherwise, the specific species of peonies have a bad smell.

Some peonies varieties might have too strong a fragrant that might irritate you. You might know that peonies change the smell during different times of the day. Temperature and humidity are also responsible for changing the fragrance of the peonies.

Sometimes, the health issues of peonies might be responsible for smelling like fish. For example, if the peonies are going through diseases in their roots or fungal problems, the peonies might smell bad.

Even sometimes the compost you use for the growth of peonies might be responsible for the bad smell. In general, the strong fragrance of peonies and the environmental effects mix together for creating the smell like fish.

Why do some peonies smell bad?

Peonies are famous for their nice smell and beautiful appearance. But sometimes, peonies can smell bad. Let’s see the reasons why some peonies smell bad.

Natural smell:

You might know that peonies smell nice. But this is not true for all the peonies. Some peonies smell bad naturally. Because peonies change the intensity of smell at different times of the day for the humidity and temperature effects.

Sometimes, the peonies produce oil and the evaporation of that oil can spread a bad or unusual smell from the flower.


Sometimes, peonies can face a different disease that creates a bad smell from the flower. For example, the disease related to the roots, fungal infection, bacterial infection, etc., can be responsible to create a bad smell from the plants.

Compost and fertilizers:

Sometimes, we use compost in different plants. So, the bad smell can come from the compost. Moreover, if we choose the wrong fertilizer for the peonies, it can damage the plant and produce a bad smell from the peonies.

Final Thoughts

Peonies are excellent flowers with nice fragrances. Moreover, their smells are so good that people use these smells in candles and perfumes. Generally, the smell varies from sweet to rosy. But sometimes, the strong fragrance mix with other elements and creates a bad smell.

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