I WISH TECHNOLOGY ALLOWED ME TO TRANSMIT the scent, and not just word-and-image data, on oddly-sweet Cimicifuga racemosa–or more accurately, Actaea racemosa, as it was reclassified by taxonomists in recent years. I even like it when its bottlebrush-shape flowers are still mostly closed (above), in the first week or two of its month-long bloom cycle.
This native North American woodlander, also called black cohosh or bugbane or snakeroot, is slow to establish, and closely related to baneberry (Actaea rubra), which grows nearby it at my place like kissing cousins. My three black cohosh plants of a decade ago didn’t do much for years…and then they did. Now I have a glade of them, their astilbe-like foliage crowned with these sweet-smelling towering ivory wands throughout July here.
When in flower, black cohosh (not to be confused with blue cohosh, a spring native) is 4 to 6 feet tall. Depending on the amount of light that filters through the canopy the spires are all wild (like the ones up top) or formally vertical (in a bit more sun, left). And as for needing maintenance: none.
It will ask your patience, however, as I say. But then all the best garden plants require the cultivation of a practice of patience, I do believe.