Flowers in the vegetable garden


What are flowers doing in my vegetable garden? Lots of things! They attract beneficial insects that eat the bad bugs, they attract pollinators for pollinating my vegetables, they can repel insects and nematodes, they can be great companions to some plants by growing them near vegetables and best of all they add beauty to a garden and bring me joy! Tuck them in around vegetables. So the next time someone pooh-pooh growing flowers in a vegetable garden give them the low-down on why they should add them.

Below are some annual flowers that will add much more than just beauty in your garden. So don’t forget to plant flowers this year!

zinnias-attracts butterflies (particularly Monarch butterflies)

calendula-repels aphids and other ‘bad’ insects

marigolds-repels bad insects/nematodes

sunflowers-attracts bees/pollen and nectar

nasturtiums-repels aphids, squash bugs, and striped pumpkin beetles

alyssum-attracts pollinators/pollen and nectar

borage-attracts bees/pollen and nectar. Edible, cucumber flavored flowers. Attractive to over 100 beneficial insects.

golden marguerite-attracts five kinds of beneficials—ladybugs, lacewings, flower flies, tachinid flies and mini-wasps.

Queen Anne’s Lace-attracts beneficial wasps (no not the kind that sting us) that eat the bad bugs

fennel-nectar-attracts beneficial wasps that eat the bad bugs

cosmos-attracts pollinators/pollen and nectar

dill-attracts beneficial insects plus pollen and nectar

bachelor button-attracts pollinators/pollen and nectar