Reseda: ornamental varieties and care tips

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Reseda (lat. Reseda ) is a herbaceous annual or perennial plant from the Resedaceae family, which is rarely used in ornamental gardening. However, some varieties of this flower allow you to ennoble the site. With a successful selection of neighboring crops, harmonious floral compositions can be made.


Reseda is a bush about 50 – 70 cm high. It consists of straight thick ribbed non-branching stems. Leaf plates are dissected into 4 – 5 lobes, the central of which is the largest. The surface of the foliage is leathery, dotted with small veins. Its color ranges from light green to emerald green.

The flowers are small, six-petalled, enclosed in racemose or pyramidal inflorescences. Petals are white, light green or yellowish. The buds of this culture have a strong pleasant aroma. Flowers have no decorative value. After flowering on the plant, you can see the fruits – red or brown boxes with many small seeds.

Species and varieties

Fragrant mignonette ( Reseda odorata ). The most common type of mignonette in ornamental gardening. It is a lush bush with a height of 30 – 40 cm. It is distinguished by long flowering from July to October, during which the aroma of flowers spreads throughout the site.

Below is a description of the decorative varieties of this type of mignonette and photos of flowers are presented:

“Ambra” is a long-standing variety, one of the first obtained by breeders. It is a spreading shrub 40 cm high. It is in demand due to its strong intoxicating aroma, which intensifies in the evening.

“Red Monarch” – a shrub with creeping stems. The flowers are light green, with brown stamens in the central part. Enclosed in long pyramidal inflorescences. Flowering is observed from the first days of summer until frost.

“Machete red” – a plant about 30 cm high. We have straight massive stems with numerous light green leaves. Flowers are large, red.

“Havskaya” – a variety 45 – 50 cm high with eight straight shoots of medium foliage. A racemose inflorescence develops on a long peduncle. The flowers are small, white, fragrant.

“Ruby” is one of the brightest mignonette varieties. Differs in rich pink lush inflorescences with a copper tint. Withstands frost. Begins to bloom in June.

“Gabriel” is a frost-resistant variety with pyramidal red inflorescences. It has straight shoots with dissected oblong foliage. Flowering is observed from the beginning of June, lasts until October.

“Victoria” – valued for large inflorescences with white flowers.

White mignonette ( Reseda alba ). Tall variety with erect stems 50 – 100 cm high. The bush has a clear pyramidal shape. In the upper part of the shoots, spike-shaped inflorescences develop with a pointed top, 23–27 cm long. The flowers are white, consist of six petals. Flowering of this species lasts throughout the summer period.

Yellow mignonette ( Reseda lutea ). Bush 80 – 100 cm high with straight stems, which are covered with dissected light green foliage. The flowers are pale yellow, enclosed in loose spike-shaped inflorescences.


Reseda is propagated by seeds that have a high germination rate. Due to this, self-seeding often occurs. If the gardener decided to start growing this crop for the first time, you will need to purchase seed in the store.

If the plant is on the site, you need to wait for the fruit to ripen and collect the boxes with seeds. You can sow twice a season with an interval of 2 to 3 weeks. This will allow you to re-see flowering.

When growing mignonette from seeds, sowing is carried out directly in open ground or for seedlings in small boxes. In the first case, this work is done after the soil has warmed up and the return frosts have passed. Sprouts on the site will hatch in 10 – 15 days. After the shoots grow up, they are rowed, leaving at a distance of 15 cm from each other.

Seedlings are grown by those who wish to receive early flowering. The containers are filled with a substrate, mixing garden soil with sand in equal proportions. Caring for hatched plants is very simple. It is enough to keep them in a place that is lit, but protected from direct rays, and watered as the earth dries.

Planting of grown seedlings on the site is carried out in the last week of May on a fine warm day. The distance between seedlings should be at least 50 – 60 cm, since sprawling bushes take up a lot of space.

Any part of the garden is suitable for growing this crop, but lush flowering can only be achieved by planting mignonette in open, lit places and proper care, in the shade the bushes will be more compact, and the aroma of flowers is weaker. After sowing, the substrate is abundantly moistened, sprinkled with a layer of mulch.

Mignonette grows well on slightly acidic loams. It is recommended to add sand, lime, peat or expanded clay to the soil where the flower will grow.


This culture is one of those that grow successfully even with minimal care, but a complete lack of care leads to a loss of attractiveness of the bush.

  • Watering. Mignonette does not need frequent watering, it can do without moisture for a long time. It is enough to carry out water procedures once a week. If, when planting, the gardener mulches the soil near the plant, then watering can be done once every 10 days.
  • Topdressing. Fertilizer must be applied 2 times per season, using any mineral composition for this. The first top dressing is carried out during the formation of foliage, the second – during flowering.
  • Other activities. To maintain a neat appearance of the plant, faded inflorescences must be removed. This procedure promotes re-blooming. At the end of flowering, fruits are removed from the plant in order to obtain seeds, if the varieties are annuals, they are dug up and destroyed. Perennial specimens tolerate even harsh winters well, so there is no need to shelter them. It is enough to cut the stems, leaving a length of no more than 5 cm.
  • Pest and disease control. Mignonette refers to plants that are practically not susceptible to diseases. However, harmful insects often attack the bush. The most common pest of this crop are caterpillars of the white butterfly. The insect is gluttonous and in a short time eats up foliage, leaving only veins. Pesticides are used to control insects, for example, the drug Fitoverm, Antitlin.
  • Collection of seeds. The collection of mignonette seeds is carried out after the maturation of the boxes. Fully ripe fruits turn yellow. They are removed from the plant and removed for ripening in a room with good air circulation. Germination of mignonette seeds is 3-5 years.

Application in the garden

Reseda is used to decorate voids on the site, design flower beds, decorate garden paths. Spreading bushes perfectly hide unsightly territories, mask outbuildings.

Very often, a plant with a pleasant fragrance is planted at the will of recreation areas in order to enjoy the aroma of flowers. Mignonette is planted in containers, installed on balconies and terraces.

Harmonious partners for this flower are plants with a weak aroma or those that have no smell at all. It can be marigolds, zinnias, lupins, yasnotki, yaskolka, yucca, salvia, poppy, escholcia, eustoma and others.

See what mignonette looks like in the garden in these photos:

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