5 Easy Flowers to Plant in Your Garden

By Ramon Gonzalez, TreeHugger

If you’re trying to overcome your seed starting fear by growing the five easy vegetables I recommended growing from seed, add these five annuals to your garden too.

Even if the goal of your garden is to grow your own food, you need flowers to attract pollinators and other beneficial insects to your garden.

1. Sunflowers

Sunflowers aren’t supposed to take well to transplanting, so sow the seeds directly into the ground when the weather warms up. Small sunflowers grown for cuttings can be sown in large pots, but for a dramatic effect grow some of the giant varieties like ‘Mammoth.’ At the base of sunflowers you can plant beans that will grow up the sunflower stalk as a support.

2. Marigolds

At the talk by Diane Ott Whealy, co-founder of Seed Savers Exchange, that I attended this year she mentioned that the recent marigold hybrids lack the scents that make them good insect repellents and companions in the vegetable garden. Marigolds are easy to start from seed, either in containers or in the ground. If you’re growing marigolds for their bug repellent qualities, choose an old variety.

3. Cosmos

Cosmos are a very pretty annual that no garden should be without. Cosmos do well in poor soil and the blooms make excellent cut flowers, and attract plenty of bees and butterflies into a garden.

4. Nasturtium

The seeds of nasturtium when prepared are called “poor man’s capers.” The young foliage and flowers of nasturtiums are edible and make good additions to salads and soups where you want to add a peppery taste. Nasturtiums are also good trap crops, meaning that garden pests like aphids are attracted to it. You can pick off the stems and blooms with aphids attached and dispose of them before they reach your vegetable garden.

5. Zinnia

Zinnia seeds are so easy to germinate in the ground as soon as it warms up that it is a waste to start them indoors. Just sow the seeds into the ground or container when the soil is warm. Zinnia blooms also make good additions to homegrown bouquets.

Got a favorite annual that is easy to grow from seed that you’d recommend?

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Elisa F.
Elisa F3 years ago

Thanks for Sharing :)

Kerin Worth
Kerin Worth6 years ago

thank you for the information

Michele Wilkinson

Thank you

Sandi C.
Sandi C6 years ago


Tanja Z.
Tanja Zilker6 years ago

thanks for info

Krystal M.
Krystal M6 years ago

Thank you!

Marc P.
Marc P6 years ago

great article thank you

Bonnie M.
Bonnie M6 years ago

Thank you-- I have all these flowering plants and they do provide lots of color and blooms.

Johnny Wheelock
Johnny Wheelock6 years ago

Choosing the Best Plants for your Garden

Many times we buy plants on impulse then find there is nowhere in the garden that really suits them. Before buying plants carefully examine your garden to see how much sun and shade it gets, whether the soil is well drained or waterlogged and whether your aspect is sheltered or windswept. You'll then be equipped to go and buy the best plants for your situation; shade-loving plants for the sheltered areas, sun-lovers for the warm spots, drought-resistant plants for the parched areas which may be either sunny or shaded, and swamp plants for the poorly-drained parts.

But wait! Test your soil first, to determine the pH level of your soil and what kind of nutrients you need to add, if any. Is the soil acid or alkaline? Most plants prefer soil that is slightly acidic, but there are some that must have alkaline soil to grow. You can alter the soil's pH level, but it's much easier to simply plant for the soil you have.

Now you are ready to plant. Well - almost. Will you plant in groups or singly? If you buy 'one of everything' your garden may seem rather spotty. Group plantings are organised, harmonious and you can vary the color for interest.

Before planting out, place your chosen plants around the garden bed in their pots to see how they will look. Re-arrange them until you are satisfied. Grouping plants in sets of threes or fives usually looks better than planting in groups of even numbers. Be sure that you have an interestin

Carmen S.
Carmen S6 years ago

Thanks for this, love flowers and they are so nice to see.