Which flowers in your garden are edible? – Orange County Register


When it comes to plants for winter color, many of them bear edible flowers. Each of these plants has its own story and its own charm, which makes you want to pick them up right now at the nursery. You might not want to make a meal with the mentioned flowers, and you might find their taste a bit bland, like I did. In any case, you can use them as a decorative garnish for salads, desserts and other dishes.

Note: First, make sure you are not allergic to a particular flower or plant. There is an old method of taking a few bites and waiting a few hours to observe if you react negatively to having eaten it, but a more cautious approach would be to consult an herbal expert before ingesting anything and you could. also consider consulting a healthcare practitioner for allergy advice. Also, keep in mind that when it comes to foliage, the young leaves of any plant are usually more palatable than the older ones. Generally speaking, plants that are not toxic to humans are not toxic to pets, at least in small quantities, but it would be wise to check the safety of any plant before leaving your pet. nearby – or let’s be clear, check for poisonous plants before ingesting anything yourself.

The first of our edible winter bloomers is marigold. Marigold flowers are sometimes used as a substitute for saffron, which comes from the stigmas, or parts of female flowers, of the fall crocus (Crocus sativa). The original marigold is the original marigold, which takes its name from 14th-century England. The word “concern” derives from the custom of giving a prayer offering to Mary in church. The round flowers suggest coins and the yellows, at least, are the color of gold. The “pot” for pot sake is short for potherb, defined as edible green vegetables that are tossed into a pot and cooked.

  • English primrose. (Photo by Joshua Tarin)

  • Dianthus. (Photo by Joshua Tarin)

  • Marigold Calendula officinalis. (Photo by Joshua Tarin)

  • Matthiola incana stock. (Photo by Joshua Tarin)

  • Daisies daisies. (Photo by Joshua Tarin)

  • Johnny-jump-up Viola tricolor. (Photo by Joshua Tarin)

The plants we usually think of when someone says “marigolds” are native to Mexico and Central America – French marigolds (Tagetes patula), the small species with wrinkled petals, and African marigolds (Tagetes erecta), the species the largest and most robust. with the pom pom flowers. Like potted marigolds, hence their name, these species belong to the daisy family and their flower petals and leaves are edible.

Calendula officinalis is the botanical nickname for marigold and it tells us more about the species. Calendula refers to its dominance of the calendar; it is one of the first flowers to bloom in the English spring and then continues to bloom nonstop until winter. The plant blooms practically all year round in our part of the world, except on hot summer days. The persistence of calendula in the garden is associated with its self-seeding prowess. Finally, its species name officinalis (which means apothecary) refers to its effectiveness in the treatment of a wide variety of physical ailments.

While marigolds are annuals, most perennial daisies also have edible flowers. The star daisy in the perennial winter garden is the daisy (Argyranthemum frutescens). This daisy grows in a symmetrical mound and features pink, pale yellow, white, or ruby ​​red flowers. Native to the Canary Islands off the northwest coast of Africa, daisies are hardy plants that don’t need a lot of attention all year round. In fact, like so many Mediterranean climate plants, it is best to leave them alone and never prune them, although removing faded flowers will result in a longer flowering period. Because their roots are shallow, mulch several inches thick will minimize summer watering. Due to their semi-succulent growth, cuttings at the tip of four-inch basal shoots, taken in the spring, will root within weeks, if not sooner.

At one point, the Santa Barbara daisy (Erigeron karvinskianus) probably has more blooming flowers than any other shrub on earth; tiny pinkish-white daisy flowers by the hundreds cover a single mound plant for months, including the winter season. Both flowers and leaves can be eaten.

Stock and sweet alyssum, which are part of the mustard family, are winter flowers with edible leaves and blooms. The stock gets its name from its flowers, intricately scalloped around the stem that wears them, suggesting the familiar office necklace known as bib stock. The stock scent is special and caught the eye of Pietro Andrea Mattioli, a 16th century botanist. Mattioli was convinced that this scent hinted at an aphrodisiac quality of the plant and set out on the mission to create a potion from its flowers that would increase love interest among those who drank it. For his dedication to this project, the botanical name of the plant – Matthiola incana – was given in his honor.

Sweet alyssum (Lobularia maritima) blooms year round. It tends to flare as it ages, but can be shrunk to maintain a more compact appearance. During this time, he will sow himself where the soil is to his liking. At one time, alsysum (a = sans, lyssum = madness) was administered medicinally to people with rabies because it was believed to have the power to treat the disease.

Dianthus, or Sweet William, is a genus that includes flowers of various sizes, from miniatures close to the ground to carnations, and can be found in bloom in all four seasons. The flowers of each are edible with a clove scent. Dianthus are biennial or perennial plants and thrive for two or three years in the garden. Some types are clumping ground covers that can be divided at the root level to increase supply.

A few years ago, I asked the corner florist for Carnations. The response I received was a sneer. “Carnations? Are they not a bit ordinary? We don’t even wear carnations anymore. I haven’t visited this florist since. Such an elitist attitude has no place in horticulture, especially when your wife’s favorite flowers are carnations.

For several years, I only offered my wife exotic and expensive bouquets which, oddly enough, never seemed to please her. After many years of marriage, she finally confessed that all she ever wanted – or wanted – were carnations. “They are pretty, they smell good, they last a long time and they are inexpensive,” she advised me. Moreover, considering the low price of carnations, you can put together several bouquets of them, give your loved one a huge bouquet, and still have enough in your pocket to bring home dinner.

The Dianthus we see in nurseries have flower heads that may be flat or even look like carnations, but none of them reach the size of florists’ carnations. However, you can grow florist carnations from seeds, which grow easily. A packet of a hundred carnation seeds (Chabaud mix) costs about two dollars from online sellers. The reason we don’t see florist’s carnations in nurseries is that they need cool summers to grow best and are usually produced locally in greenhouses. The Dianthus / carnation cultivars we see are much more compatible with our climate and are still notable for their longevity in vase arrangements, although the vases involved will need to be around six inches tall to accommodate their shorter stems. Has anyone read this successfully growing carnations? If so, tell me how you did it and I can share the information.

English primroses (Primula x polyantha), those with bright yellow, pink, red and blue flowers, have edible flowers and leaves. They are actually perennials but are usually discarded after their winter flowering has ended. The key to keeping them until next winter begins with soil preparation, where perfect drainage should be achieved by adding a good dose of compost before planting. Exposure to morning sun or filtered sun is recommended.

Tip of the week: Plants of the genus Viola, cluster pansies and Johnny-jump-ups with sprawling ground covers like the legendary sweet violet, are edible. The word thought is derived from thought, the French word for thought. The idea behind it is that looking at a thought puts you in a thought reverie about your loved one.

The velvety texture of the pansy petals belies their resistance to the cold. After a frosty winter night, I saw frost covered pansies in the morning that thawed during the day with no signs of damage to the flowers or leaves. Although considered winter flowers, pansies and Johnny-jump-ups planted now can flower until the end of June, provided their faded flowers are removed as soon as they appear.

When it comes to charm, can any flower compete with Johnny-jump-ups? Less than half the size of thoughts, there is something eloquently compelling about them. It should be noted that while thoughts seldom, if ever, self-seed, Johnny-jump-ups eagerly self-seed.

While pansies and johnny-jump-ups can endure full sun to partial shade, all ground cover violets will not thrive unless you have a respite from the sun in a shady location.


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