Tulips are fragrant
While it is true that the majority of tulips are odourless, some of them are blessed with quite a pleasant and sometimes intense fragrance. But what exactly do tulips smell like?
A study conducted in Japan in 2012 examined the floral volatiles emitted by the fresh flowers of cultivar tulips and identified over 130 chemical components generating their scents. The compounds identified in the examined tulips allowed the researchers to arrange the flowers according to their odour profiles into the following 9 scent groups:
Anise – spicy and sweet, smelling like Christmas pastry
Citrus – fresh and juicy or more intense and oily, like orange peels
Fruity – ranging from fresh and juicy, to sweet fruity and even faint bitter-almonds-like
Green – with delicate grassy-green notes
Herbal – defined by herbaceous notes Herbal-honey – composed of intertwined herbal and sweet honey odours
Rosy – emitting light rosy scents
Spicy – spicy, humid and at times medicinal
Woody – disclosing hardly perceivable woody notes.
Whichever scent predominates in a certain tulip variety, tulips definitely smell like spring and happiness, don’t they?!