Summertime Planting

6/8/2020

Summer has arrived or at least the weather feels like summertime. One common activity we may have in common is a desire to plant some plants and flowers. I love colorful flowers in my yard or in hanging baskets.

I am also reminded of the times when insects or Deer have come through and consumed my favorite flowers or vegetables. I prefer to use natural or organic methods to stimulate growth and or control pests.  For instance, in the greenhouse I use Lady Bugs or Green Lacewings to control aphids regularly.

Working in the Aquaponics Greenhouse, I ran across the subject of companion planting. This is a practice where you plant some plants for the benefit that they bring to other plants. Some plants can either attract or repel insects and could be used to protect another plant close by.  For instance, we plant Basil close to the cherry tomatoes so the aphids will find the basil first before the tomatoes. Then we can release the predator insects in the basil to remove the threat.

Common flowers that can be used are Marigolds and Nasturtiums, and some herbs like basil, Rosemary Chives or Mint can be included in your beds and boxes. The additional benefit of herbs are that you can also enjoy them to enhance you meals.

I think the blend of flowers and herbs as companion plants brings richness and depth to most flower gardens. Additionally, we benefit from healthier flower plants that have fewer insects feasting upon our specially selected flowers.

Enjoy your flowers!