Flowers have been fascinating to us since childhood. Remember picking a handful of dandelions to gift? Bringing the beauty of nature into our homes and gathering flowers for bouquets are simple pleasures of planting a garden. Here are 5 tips to creating a cutting garden of your own.
For a steady stream of flowers to cut, you can create a production style bed with rows, similar to how you would plant a vegetable garden. Or you can mix plants into your established gardens. We suggest walking your yard. Ask yourself what you have and how can you make it work. You probably already have some cutting flowers in your garden!
Combine seasonal blooms with plants that have interesting foliage for a display of textures. Think of form, shape and texture as well as color for your design. Use leaves, stems, foliage, buds, and seeds along with flowers.
Pick a sunny spot with well-draining soil. Most cutting flowers like full sun, about 6-8 hours. Keep in mind the perennials that grow in shade, like Hosta, Astible, Heuchera, Ferns, Lily of the Valley, and Solomon’s Seal offer wonderful foliage to add to arrangements.
Herbs add fragrance and textured leaves to bouquets. Try Lavender, Feverfew, Dill, Thyme, Fennel, Chives, and Hyssop.
The more you cut, the more they bloom. Flowers that will bloom more when cut include Tall Phlox, Nepeta, Salvia, Coreopsis, Calamintha, Leucanthemum (Daisies), and Gaillardia.
You may already have foliage and flowers to choose from right in your own backyard. When ready to try something new, there are thousands more grown locally here at The Growing Place. June offers an abundance of blooms, many of them fragrant (F), and is a great time to plant before the hottest days of summer.
Perennials in bloom now include: Acanthus, Achillea (F), Agastache (F), Astilbe (F), Buddleia (F), Coreopsis, Delphinium, Dianthus (F), Echinacea, Gaillardia, Heliopsis, Hemerocallios, Heuchera, Hosta, Iris, Lavender, Lychnis, Monarda (F), Nepeta, Penstemon, Phlox (F), Roses (F), Perovskia (F), Salvia, Sedum, Veronica. Ornamental Grasses offer a towering softness in a cut arrangement. For structure in your cutting garden, if not planting rows, consider these flowering and eye-catching foliage shrubs: Forsythia, Witchhazel, Lilac, Flowering Quince, Hydrangea, Dappled Willow, and Purple Smokebush.
More than anything, plant what you’d like to pick and see in your home. Have fun with the growing process, and don’t limit yourself on how to make arrangements. They can be whatever is pleasing to your eye.