Planting a Cut Flower Garden
Have you always wanted to have fresh, cut flowers for arrangements but didn't want to cut the blooms from your beautiful flower garden? Just start your very own cutting garden and have fresh flowers all spring and summer long. Learning how to grow a cut flower garden can be easy. The gardening experts at Southern States can offer some great tips to help you get started.
When starting a cut flower garden, take the time to prepare the bed and plan what flowers you want to plant. Find a spot in your yard that is not clearly visible – alongside a shed, near a garage or in the back corner of your yard. Most cutting flowers require six hours or more of sun per day and need rich, well-drained soil. Plant your favorite flowers choosing a variety of colors, textures, and heights. Plant the flowers in rows to make it simple to weed, feed, and cut. Remember, this is a production garden similar to your vegetable garden.
When thinking about how to make a cutting garden, consider the types of flowers you love, include both annuals and perennials. Both types make excellent cut flowers. Be sure to include spring, summer and fall blooming flowers in your cutting garden to ensure that you will have fresh, cut flowers for many months. The perennials will be the mainstay of your cutting garden providing blooms year after year. Great perennial flowers include: carnations, iris, roses, peonies, black-eyed susans, and phlox. The annuals you plant each spring will provide great opportunities to experiment with new varieties and new floral arrangement designs. Choose from some of these annuals: sunflowers, sweet peas, marigolds, larkspur, zinnias and gladioli. Stagger the planting of each individual flower variety so that you can enjoy your favorite blooms for a longer period of time.
What about combining your cut flower garden and your vegetable garden? This is a great plan especially if you have limited space. Your vegetable garden can actually benefit from growing close to flowers and even herbs. This concept, known as companion planting, is the establishment of different species in close proximity to achieve a cultural benefit such as pest control or greater yield. Mixing your flowers with your vegetables is a great plan that can protect your vegetables from insect pests making them healthier and more productive. Plant flowers amongst your vegetables that attract good insects like ladybugs, lacewings, and ground beetles. Attracting good bugs can keep the bad bugs away and both your flowers and your vegetables will thrive together.
Once your flowers are blooming, cut stems early in the morning or later in the evening avoiding the heat of the day Always use sharp, clean tools to cut your flower stems. For this, and all of your lawn and gardening needs, trust your neighborhood Southern States for the tools you need to get the job done.