See what planting these specific flowers can do for your vegetable garden

When starting to plan your garden for the upcoming spring, consider incorporating flowering plants and herbs. It might be hard to imagine planting flowers in place of your most-loved edibles, but the benefits are worth the sacrifice.
Flowers attract pollinators, which majority of fruiting plants need. And they also attract predatory insects that prey upon insect pests. Not to mention, some flowers, like the well-known marigold, actually repel some garden pests altogether. Keep reading for a list of flowers to use in your vegetable garden and the benefits they provide.
Black Eyed Susan
Planet Natural cites black-eyed Susans as attracting parasitic wasps and bumble bees. Try planting a clump near your tomatoes, where the bumble bees will improve the quality of fruit your tomatoes produce. Black-eyed Susans reseed prolifically, so deadheading is helpful to limit spreading.
According to Eartheasy, yarrow attracts ladybugs, which prey on aphids and mites, and hover flies, which prey on aphids and mealybugs. Yarrow also attracts parasitic wasps, including braconid wasps, which can help to control the dreaded hornworm that often wreaks havoc on tomato plants. To boot, yarrow is a popular medicinal herb used as a tea to help with fever and colds.
Rodale's Organic Life and Eartheasy both point to cosmos, and other lacy-leaved plants, as attracting lacewings. Lacewings are an important beneficial insect to invite into your garden since both adults and larvae feed on scales, thrips, aphids, mealybugs, and caterpillars. Cosmos is also an ideal flower for cutting and displaying indoors.
Bee balm
Bee balm is great for attracting pollinators, and, according to Gardener's Supply Company, this includes bees, butterflies, and hummingbirds. Not to mention, bee balm has an amazing scent and is highly valued as a medicinal herb.
P. Allen Smith credits catnip with keeping aphids, Japanese beetles, squash bugs, and weevils away from your edibles. Using up a little bit of space for catnip is sure to improve the overall resilience of your garden. Smith also recommends using dried catnip to deter ants from your house.
Use nasturtiums throughout your vegetable garden, since many veggie-loving pests don't love nasturtiums. According to Mother Nature Network, nasturtiums repel insects such as aphids, whiteflies, squash bugs, various types of beetles, and cabbage loopers.
Scented marigolds are a known pest deterrent in the garden. Mother Nature Network suggests using them to keep aphids, mosquitoes, and even rabbits at bay. Marigold roots eventually help to deter nematodes as well. Be cautious, however, since P. Allen Smith says marigolds can actually attract snails and spider mites.
Lavender is another plant loved by pollinators, especially butterflies and bees. Eartheasy points out lavender's long bloom cycle, which lasts over a month and gives pollinators a consistent source of nectar during the spring.
Purple coneflower
If you are looking for a summer bloomer loved by bees and butterflies, turn to purple coneflower. You'll also love seeing goldfinches eat the seeds as they ripen at the end of the season. Not to mention, purple coneflower, or Echinacea purpurea, is well known for its medicinal properties as an herbal tea.
Alyssum is not only great for attracting butterflies, but, according to Planet Natural, it also attracts a host of predatory insects. This includes parasitic wasps, ground beetles, tachinid flies, and hover flies. Alyssum's fragrant, low-growing, mounding habit makes it an ideal border plant for your garden.

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February 6   ·  
February 6   ·  
February 6   ·