Welcome to Notes on Notes, our regular series explaining what a note is. For our full perspective on notes, read this post. For earlier posts in the series, click here. For an enlightening read on white florals, keep reading.

The note: White florals

The Latin name: album florum

The definition: Trickier than you’d think. Some literally white flowers (like lily of the valley) are classified as green florals, since they smell more like a green flower than a white one. Generally, when you’re talking about a white floral note, you’re referring to something sweet and heady, like jasmine, gardenia or orange blossom.

The fragrance(s): Hanami

The scent profile (per Fragrantica):White flowers have the most narcotic scent of all flowers; lush, opulent and truly intoxicating.”

The translation (per us): Actually, Fragrantica pretty much nailed this one.

The fun facts:

-The orange blossom is considered an aphrodisiac. (Your mileage may vary.)

-“Edelweiss,” from The Sound of Music, literally translates to “white flower” and is, of course, an  ode to same.

-Billie Holiday’s signature flowers in her hair? Gardenias.

-Sigmund Freud loved gardenias, if Wikipedia can be believed.