Gardening

Why do we need to plant flowers in our vegetable gardens?

Flowers help to diversify color, shape, and odor of plants. This helps to reduce the attraction of bad insects.

Certain flowers attract parasite wasps that come to feed on the nectar. Favorite flowers for these insects are any flower in the daisy family, red salvia, and French marigolds.

Marigolds can help with nematode problems in the garden. Marigolds must be seed broadcast with no other roots in the area.

At the end of the season, plow them up and the planted area will be relatively free of most nematodes the following year. Flowers also attract pollinators (bees and butterflies) to the garden. Pollinators are essential for fruit set on most of our vegetables.

Flowers not only have practical benefits in helping to reduce pests, but they add beauty to the garden.

Good luck planting flowers in your garden!

Have a problem at your farm or garden you can’t seem to figure out? Contact Ensley at uge2233@uga.edu, or call the Polk County Extension Office at 770-749-2142.