Aloysia virgata, white almond bush
The best thing about my white almond bush is its fragrance.

White almond bush

Aloysia virgata

I thought my white almond bush would be, well, a bush. After a few months' neglect, however, its fragrant branches were swaying outside my second-floor window. I cut it back severely; I think it will do fine. 

 

The white almond bush, or Aloysia virgata, is all about the fragrance. Some people say it smells just like grape soda. The fragrance fills my backyard, nearly all summer. The genus is named for Maria Luisa of Parma (1751-1819), wife of King Charles IV of Spain.

 

The overall shape of the plant is nothing special, and the leaves are scratchy and unpleasant to brush up against. 

 

Aloysia virgata comes to us from Argentina. It is in the verbena family, Verbenaceae. I grow it outside screened windows on the east side of my house, so I can let the fragrance blow through.

 

To learn more:

 

A botanical description of Aloysia virgata from Texas A&M University

 

"Almond Verbea: A Honey Bee Magnet"