Attracting Pollinators with our Flowers in the Garden
As we are all starting to wind down the spring garden and begin preparing for the fall, most of us don’t consider planting flowers in the vegetable garden. Besides their outward appearance, flowers can bring many benefits to the garden. With the weather right now, Greg suggested that though you can still plant Okra and Sweet Potatoes and get a good harvest, that’s about it. The time has come to begin planting our cover crops and preparing our soil for the future.
One of the apparent benefits of Flowers is there ability to attract pollinators. If you already have a hive planting fresh flowers for them will feed them well. If you don’t have a colony, this flower garden will draw in the natural ones. Flowers also bring in beneficial insects such as butterflies. These beneficial insects will then help keep down your pest pressure and keep away the harmful insects. Remember, not all bugs are bad.
Flowers of any kind can lift anybody’s spirits when needed. If you are having a bad day or you and your woman are fighting, all you have to do is take a walk around the garden or cut you a lovely bouquet, and that will put a smile on anyone’s face.
Favorite Varieties of Flowers for the Vegetable Garden
Growing flowers in the vegetable garden are something we never leave out. One of our tried and true flower varieties is our ProCut Sunflowers. These are perfect for the bouquets and anything you want to take inside because they are pollen-less. Pollen-less means that even when you shake them around, no yellow specks will fall, making them great for indoors. Also though they are pollen-less, that doesn’t stop the bees from swarming all around. If you want a sunflower that isn’t as expensive and doesn’t have to be planted as meticulous, some of the varieties we suggest are Chocolate Cherry, Autumn Beauty, Teddy Bear, and Santa Fe Sunset. These few sunflowers are gorgeous and can be mixed to grow a plot full! Sunflowers are perfect for a warm-season cover crop.
Our next favorite flower is the Benary Giant. The seed is a Zinnia and is one of the biggest blooms in any variety. Not only is it big and beautiful, but it makes for a perfect cut flower because of its plant structure. At Hoss Tools, we sell many of the Benary Giant Zinnias separately, but we also sell them in mixes. Putting the Benary Giant Zinnia Mix in your garden will bring it life like never before. When you are done and picked all the flowers, you would like you can cut them down and mow it into the plots giving it proper nutrients.
Show and Tell Segment
On the Row by Row Garden Show, we love starting with something to eat. This week Travis brought in several mason jars full of his freshly fermented pickles. Fermenting vegetables is very popular, but something the guys at Hoss Tools haven’t tried a lot. With the use of a big crock and many cucumbers, Travis topped them with some seasoning and let them sit. Both the guys loved the way they tasted and decided they will be doing this a lot more. They explained how this is simpler than canning because you don’t have to steam or boil anything but instead let it sit and then pour into jars. If you are overflowing with vegetables in your garden and want to try something new, you can start fermenting with our simple Complete Fermentation Kit.
After the guys stuffed their bellies with pickles, they started talking about the tallest thing in the garden right now, Sweet Corn. Our Sweet Corn varieties, Avalon and Hickory King are almost ready! Our pollen is dripping all over the newly formed silks meaning we will have corn real soon. Besides Sweet Corn, Hoss Tools also offers Field Corn seeds, and we got some new ones on the way. Lancaster Sure Crop Corn is one of our new varieties that is an heirloom with huge ears. The other new Field Corn variety is Reids Yellow Dent Corn, which is also an heirloom, but this one is drought-tolerant.
This week’s viewer question segment started with some frequently asked questions regarding pest control spraying. After last week’s episode on pest control programs, we left our viewers wondering, so the guys answered.
The first viewer wanted to know after you have sprayed your garden with the pest control spray and still have leftovers do you have to throw it out or can you save it for later? The guys both agreed that you should to try and only mix your desired need, doing that will leave you not much leftover. You don’t want ever to use the leftover spray because after the chemicals have been sitting there mixed, it messes with their pH levels and how well it will work.
The next viewer wanted to know exactly when do you start these pest control programs? Travis said that if you are transplanting once you have put them in the ground and they have formed their roots, it is fine to spray. Though this seems young, starting spraying early on your plants will help prevent some of those pest pressure you know is coming.