The Perfect Pairing: Best Flowers to Plant in Your Vegetable Garden


Flowers in a Vegetable Garden Are Essential

In my experience, most people envision food in their backyard kitchen gardens: herbs, vegetables, and maybe some fruit plants or trees. Many home gardeners do not consider flowers, which is a mistake! Flowers may bring a lot of value to your kitchen garden.

flowers for vegetable garden

4 Reasons to Plant Flowers in Your Vegetable Garden

Here are the top five reasons why I believe flowers are an essential component of any vegetable or kitchen garden:

Flowers Add Beauty

First and foremost, flowers are lovely! Don’t you want your yard to seem lovely and inviting? Put some flowers in there! By mixing them in with your vegetables, you’ll get a lot more color, texture, and diversity.

Flowers Attract Beneficial Insects

Planting flowers also attracts beneficial insects and predators. You want pollinators like bees and butterflies, but you also want predatory wasps, lady beetles, lacewings, and other insects to help keep pests at bay. Flowers may certainly help you with this.

Flowers Improve the Overall Health of Your Garden

A third reason to use flowers is to enhance the surrounding area and soil quality. Clovers and phacelia blooms may be used to give nitrogen to your soil as a green manure. Borage has extensive roots that may aerate and break up the soil. Nasturtium spreads to cover the ground, acting as a weed deterrent and a source of shade.

Flowers Can Be Food for People Too!

Finally, you should have flowers in your kitchen garden so that you may utilize them! There are several edible flowers that may be eaten or used in recipes for salads, teas, baked products, and other dishes.

edible flowers to plant in vegetable garden

5 Tips for Planting Flowers in Your Vegetable Garden

There are several things to think about while adding flowers to your food garden. Here are some broad guidelines:

Planting Flowers Tip #1

There are seasons for flowers, just as there are seasons for vegetables. Cool-season flowers should be paired with cool-season vegetables, while warm/hot-season flowers should be paired with warm/hot-season vegetables.

Planting Flowers Tip #2

Learn about the growth needs of your flowers. Most people will want plenty of sun and plenty of water. Place them in a location where they will flourish.

Planting Flowers Tip #3

Know the sizes of your flowers. Some grow quite tall, while others spread out widely. Remember this while planting, since you don’t want to shade or push out your crops.

Planting Flowers Tip #4

While many flowers aid in plant growth, some might be detrimental to particular plants. When in doubt, check twice. Sunflowers, for example, may hinder potato development, so combining them is a no-no.

Planting Flowers Tip #5

Consider thinking beyond the garden box! Flowering vines on a trellis and trailing flowers along the raised bed border may be added; flowers can be hung in baskets throughout the garden or in pots along the fence, and so much more. I always find a way to include additional flowers. Remember, less exposed dirt equals less weeds!

flower and vegetable garden layout

The Best Flowers to Include in Your Vegetable Garden

Of course, there are several flowers you may plant in your garden, so let’s concentrate on those that will discourage pests, attract beneficial insects, and add value to our vegetables, all while being quite simple to start and maintain.

The Best Flowers to Plant in a Vegetable Garden to Deter Pests

Marigolds, sage, lavender, borage, catmint, and geraniums are the greatest flowers for repelling pests. Marigolds are arguably the most well-known of these choices due to their inherent nematode repellent properties. This promotes the development of numerous fruiting vegetables such as tomatoes, eggplants, peppers, squash, and so on.

marigolds repel garden pests

The other blossoms are quite fragrant and may deter hornworms, aphids, cabbage moths, Japanese beetles, and squash bugs. There are also nasturtiums, which may not always repel pests but can draw them away from your valuable veggies, particularly aphids and cabbage worms.

Infographic: Flowers to Plant in a Vegetable Garden to Deter Pests

The Easiest Flowers to Grow from Seed Outdoors to Attract Pollinators

Sunflowers, salvia, zinnias, borage, and wildflowers are my favorite pollinator-attracting flowers for a vegetable garden. All of them are simple to raise from seed in your yard, and the bees and butterflies love them. Just keep in mind that some of them may grow fairly tall, and salvia and borage can spread out rather thickly.

easiest flowers to grow from seed outdoors

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The Best Flowers to Plant in a Vegetable Garden to Attract Ladybugs and Other Predatory Insects

Flowers of the carrot family, such as Queen Anne’s Lace, dill, anise, fennel, and parsley, attract predatory insects effectively. Wasps and ladybugs like these blossoms and will happily examine your vegetables for other delicacies. Many of these plants also act as hosts for butterfly larvae, thus they may fulfill two functions.

Flowers like cosmos and daisies, in addition to carrot family flowers, attract lacewings, which, like ladybugs, may be terrible predators in your garden.

plants to attract ladybugs to garden

The Best Flowers to Plant in a Vegetable Garden to Improve the Soil

If you’re seeking for flowers that can help your soil, try comfrey, dandelions, or clover. These blooms are fantastic for insects, and you can dig them into the soil to supply nitrogen when required. Their root systems also aerate and loosen the soil, allowing for better drainage.

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A General Timeline for Planting Flowers in Your Vegetable Garden

Let’s look at the seasons and when you may wish to plant particular flowers in your yard.

Planting Flowers in Fall

In the south, fall is an excellent time to introduce any perennial flowers as well as any wildflowers or cool-hardy annual flowers. In northern zones, you may plant in the autumn or wait until early spring, depending on your frost/freeze dates. Dill, Queen Anne’s Lace, anise, fennel, parsley, coneflower, larkspur, and yarrow are examples of cool-hardy annual flowers that work well in the vegetable garden.

best flowers to plant in fall

Planting Flowers in Spring

If you live in a colder region, attempt to plant your cold-hardy annual flowers 6 weeks before the last frost date. Spring is an excellent time to plant zinnias, cosmos, sunflowers, nasturtiums, lavender, catmint, daisies, marigolds, borage, and other warm-season flowers in all regions. Many of them will continue to develop throughout the summer, while others may wither due to the heat.

best flowers to attract butterflies

Planting Flowers in Summer

Sunflowers, zinnias, cosmos, and marigolds may be grown throughout the summer, and most sages and salvias thrive in the heat as well. I prefer to succession plant the annual flowers so that I have fresh blooming all year long.

zinnias are easy annual flowers to grow from seed

Tips for Planning a Flower and Vegetable Garden Layout

Planting flowers in pots, bags, or hanging baskets throughout the area is one of the simplest methods to start using flowers in your kitchen garden. You may mark them as flower zones and utilize them as rest stops for insects passing through your garden. Almost all of the flowers listed in this article may be grown in pots, which allows you to more easily regulate their position and growth circumstances.

Here are some fantastic flower-vegetable combinations to plant in the same beds:

  • Marigolds with tomatoes, peppers, or squash: Tuck the blossoms into the food plants’ base.
  • Borage with strawberries: Arrange the borage in the corners of the bed, and the strawberries in the center.
  • With cabbage, broccoli, or cauliflower, combine sage or lavender: Place the flowers in front of the bed’s bigger brassica plants.
  • Nasturtiums with okra: Plant the nasturtium near the base of the okra plants, and it will spread.
  • Green beans with sunflowers: Place the sunflowers between the beans.
  • Combine zinnias or cosmos with summer vegetables such as zucchini or melons: Place the flowers at the rear of the bed and the vegetables in front.
  • Wildflowers with autumn foods such as lettuces or root vegetables: Place the wildflowers in the rear of the bed and the vegetables in the front.
  • Violas or pansies with autumn and winter vegetables: Tuck the flowers in amid the bigger vegetables.

planting flowers in vegetable garden

Time to Add More Flowers to Your Vegetable Garden

I hope this has given you some inspiration for adding flowers to your kitchen garden. As a great supporter of cut flower gardens, I may be prejudiced, but don’t flowers simply make the world a better place?

easiest flowers to plant from seed outdoors

Related Questions

  • What flowers and vegetables grow well together?

    To deter aphids and beetles, plant marigolds among your cucumbers. Friends: To deter aphids and beetles, plant marigolds and nasturtiums among your cucumbers. Companion plants include beans, celery, maize, lettuce, dill, peas, and radishes.

  • What flowers help pollinate vegetable gardens?

    Mix calendula with summer squash, sweet peas with runner beans, and cucumbers with cosmos. Other floral vegetable garden mates include alyssum, bachelor’s button, bee balm, nasturtiums, and rosemary.

  • Should I plant flowers around my vegetable garden?

    Yes, adding flowers to your vegetable garden deters pests and attracts helpful pollinators, making them ideal for veggie gardens.

  • Can you plant any flowers with vegetables?

    Remember that you may produce both veggies and flowers in containers and hanging baskets! Colorful spicy peppers look great in a flower pot, and they go well with trailing petunias.

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