3 best flowers to plant in the veggie patch!
Many of us envision our vegetable garden an orderly affair, with tidy rows of perfect lettuce heads and blocks planted by color. However enticing this restrained Victorian style may seem, consider the benefits a smattering of companion flowers would offer… from attracting a bevy of beneficial insects to repelling pests and providing edible garnish! Unleash a bit of chaos into your vegetable patch with these flowers and you’ll be pleased with the results!
Beckon the Beneficial Insects with Marigolds!
Marigolds, members of the tagetes genus, are easy to grow annuals that will attract a host of helpful bugs to the vegetable garden. Encouraging predatory insects will help to keep the pest insect population down. Marigolds are especially alluring to hoverflies, these amazing insects serve dual purpose; during the larval stage, they are known to eat aphids (a common garden scourge) and as flying adults they help to pollinate the flowers in your garden. French marigolds are also appreciated for their ability to suppress nematodes in the soil, however it is important to note that one must plant a dense cover crop of marigolds to affect nematode populations. Linnaeus Burning Embers Marigold is an exceptionally beautiful variety. Order Marigold seeds here.
Calendula, an herbalist favorite
Calendula is a well known flower, especially appreciated for its edible petals, which are also said to have anti-inflammatory properties. Dried calendula can be found in soothing salves and tinctures. Although it hasn't been rigorously studied, calendula has been long considered to be rich in resins that act as a natural pesticide, deterring certain harmful garden insects. Calendula is a compact and floriferous annual flower, with blazing yellow and orange blooms. Our favorite variety to grow is called Resina, it is especially rich in resins and a top choice for herbalists and crafters. Order resina calendula seeds here.
Nasturtiums, the tastiest flower in the patch.
With a piquant, spicy kick, the flowers and leaves of nasturtium are a culinary delight! Select from creeping varieties or bush types depending on your needs. Regardless of the habit, they will add vibrancy to the landscape and the salad bowl.