Saturday, April 24, 2010

Nasturtium -- A garden must have


It's hard to believe that after about 5+ years of vegetable gardening I have never grown a Nasturtium before this year. When visiting my best friend a few weeks ago, she raved about how easy this flower is to grow, and to grow it in between my vegetables. So, while out with her, I bought a few seed packets to take home and give this guy a try. Shortly after I got home, my daughter and I pushed a few of these seeds down in the ground.

I haven't been weeding much because of this though. Mostly because I didn't know what the leaves looked like, I was afraid I'd pull up a baby flower instead of a weed. Yesterday however, I looked up what they looked like, so I could go out there and confidently avoid my baby Nasturtium's.

So why plant them?

1. They are edible! They are a beautiful addition to any salad, and I have read they taste similar to watercress. Once I have an abundant supply, I'll let you know my own personal thoughts on this.

2. According to the book, Great Garden Companions (linked below), they are reputed to keep away cucumber beetles, so they make a great companion for you're cukes. They also create a habitat for predatory insects...you know, the ones you want in your garden to keep the nasties at bay.

3. They are easy. Even you who has a black thumb can grow these babies. They are hard to kill, and generally reseed themselves year after year. So plant them, enjoy them, forget about them. They'll still be there.

4. One plant will have a variety of colors on it. You'll have a beautiful variety of colors in your garden.

5. Because they are a spreading plant, they act like a live mulch, preventing weeds, and helping your garden retain water. Meaning less work for you.

This is a stock photo I found online, I'll be sure to post more pictures as mine continue to grow. The picture of the seedling up top is from the garden.

Happy Saturday!!








6 comments:

  1. I've had a horrendous time trying to get them to grow. I gave up a few years ago. Could be our climate, though. Or I just suck at gardening ;)

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  2. i have also read that some of the pests that really like cukes will stay away b/c they dislike the nasturtium so much, you just kinda hide your cuke plants w/in it.

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  3. Shannon, you should definitely try again. I don't know though, it could how north you are. Not sure.

    Welcome to my blog Jenessa. :) I've heard that about Nasturtium as well, it has a spicy flavor, so I would imagine bugs would stay away. I can't wait to see how pretty it grows.

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  4. They are VERY spicy... seriously like the strongest tasting radish you have ever had!! lol! I love them and never had an issue with them growing. Shanon, I have heard that if your soil is too fertitle (too much Nitrogen) that they will not do well at all. If this was the problem, I imagine that they would just die as a seedling.

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  5. I have never heard of such a thing before! When I first saw that name, it sounded like some chemical fertilizer or something!

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  6. Awww, Liz, go back to Lowe's and get you some seeds. You should try it!

    Shannon, I'd listen to Jessica. She is said best friend mentioned in the post, and my go to person to well...just about everything.

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