The impact of landscape plant fragrance on emotion and brain responses

Y.C. Wu, C.Y. Chang
There are a great amount of research suggested that approach to plants can provide positive benefits. Moreover, fragrant plants not only have visual benefits, but fragrant plants have more beneficial effects on smelling their aromas. There is a close relationship between olfaction and emotion, which supports olfaction bringing up different emotional feelings. Many literatures have confirmed that the fragrance of plants can reduce anxiety (Lehrner et al., 2000; Field et al., 2005) and trigger positive emotion (Warrenburg, 2005; Weber and Heuberger, 2008) and other effects, however, the link between emotion and brain area responses of fragrant plants is still unclear. The purpose of this study is to use functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) technique to explore the effects of different plant fragrance on the subjects' brain activation responses and mood. This study used the common fragrant plants of Taiwanese landscape: rose, jasmine and lily as plant materials. Due to the fragrant structure, Osmophores, located on the petal, this study only extracted the petal part of the plant for experiments, which also can eliminate the scent interfering factors such as soil and pots. In this study, 38 subjects were assigned to smell the fragrant for two runs, in each run, three different fragrant plants were randomly assigned, and subjects had smell each kind of fragrance for 18 s. For physiological and mental indicators, the functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) machine was used to examine the brain activity while smelling the fragrance, and the subjects had to complete the emotional questionnaire, ScentMove, after each smell phrase for totally six times. This study tried to explore the health beneficial effects of different fresh plant fragrance psychologically, emotion, and physiologically, the brain activation response
Wu, Y.C. and Chang, C.Y. (2021). The impact of landscape plant fragrance on emotion and brain responses. Acta Hortic. 1313, 53-58
DOI: 10.17660/ActaHortic.2021.1313.7
fragrant plants, rose, jasmine, lily, functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), emotion