Every year when spring approaches my first thought is, “Which cut flowers should I plant?” Flowers are wonderful and the idea of skipping them during planting season isn’t an option.
Since I’m going with smaller raised beds I’m focusing my energy on simplicity and a statement, which means we’re planting Startle Garden style.
Begin by Prepping the Raised Beds
Before I could even entertain the idea of planting the raised beds needed filling. I love this part of the process but honestly, it’s hard work especially when the main ingredient involves working with clay. Establishing a base to get the amending process moving forward takes several ingredients and you can get those tips here.
I’m not like most gardeners, I don’t buy my garden soil, for me it’s about getting down to the basics, embracing nature and letting it work for me. To do this I walk through my environment seeking the materials under my feet, it’s a matter of seeing what can be incorporated before moving forward.
This year I’ve discovered a neat combination and after mixing them together in the wheel barrow this consistency surprised the day lights out of me.
- Tree ash from our burn piles
- A variety of clay, hard and soft
We also had a great deal of top soil deposit through our property from the creek during the flood rains back in February. I saw all of these elements as gifts including pieces of sticks and debris that worked great for layering.
Over time additional kitchen ingredients will be added to continue the amending process and eventually these beds will be a nice genuine loam, be warned this could take a good 3 years but if I keep up the amending process it’s easy enough to speed that up.
The beauty of working with nature is uncovering how perfectly everything works together. I love that!
Choosing Flower Seeds to Plant
When it came time to choose flower seeds I grabbed my vintage seed box. This was my grandpa’s lunch box and it seemed fitting to use it for storing seeds.
There were many seed packages inside; this was a nice surprise so I planted them all because some have been hanging around for a while.
- Larkspur and Delphinium
- Jade Sunflowers
- Zinnias and Cosmos
- Lisianthus and Dianthus
- Bells of Ireland
Choosing seeds for a flower cut garden can sometimes be difficult. If this is a new concept then begin with easy to grow options that are suiting to your climate. This may take a little research or you can just dive in and know that zinnias, cosmos and sunflowers are three very easy to grow cut flowers.
Johnny’s Selected Seeds is also one of my favorite cut flower seed suppliers; they offer growing details for each variety.
Direct Seed, Will They Germinate?
I’m a huge fan of direct seed planting because it’s simple and normally involves very little thinning or transplanting. The direct approach takes me back to how we gardened when I was a kid and those are some neat memories.
When you’re starting from scratch sometimes you have to weigh your options, keep things uncomplicated so you can reach your goals.
So it’s easy to say, I’ve been weighing options left and right and so far it’s working.
Germination should be positive because most of the seeds were under 2-years and because I have tall raised beds very few weeds will appear which means seedlings will be easy to spot.
After the seeds were planted I noticed the day lilies over in the herb garden tripled so I propagated and moved about five new plant bunches over to the edge. I’m not really thinking they’ll be good for cut flowers but I needed a place for transplanting and their bright yellow color will be welcoming.
I’m finding that small scale gardening is a lot of fun and this cut flower garden is going to be a wonderful place that would be easy to expand because who doesn’t love fresh cut flowers?