Tuesday, 11 November 2014

Nasturtiums: The Life Cycle

Nasturtiums. It's a hard word to spell (and say!) but it's a super easy plant to grow. From sowing to collecting the seeds I explain the life cycle of the nasturtium and share some interesting facts including the hilarious meaning behind the name!...

A tiny seed - what could this possibly turn into?...

Nasturtium facts

Nasturtiums can be trailing, climbing or even dwarf varieties. I don't think he was one of the Seven Dwarfs though...

Nasturtiums are annual flowers which mean they complete their life cycle in one year. Don't worry though they are easy to reproduce...

The poorer the soil the more flowers your nasturtium plant will produce!

Nasturtiums are great companion plants in the garden! They are known to deter aphids, whiteflies, cucumber beetles and other pests from roses, tomatoes, cucumbers, cabbage and other plants.

You can eat nasturtiums - the flowers are a good source of Vitamin C and iron and look pretty on your plate. The leaves taste lovely and peppery and are great in salads. 

The name nasturtium means “nose twister” in Latin, referring to people’s reaction upon tasting the flowers!

To grow nasturtiums is super easy. You can plant the seeds straight into the ground, or you can make an earlier start and sow them indoors. That's what I did, thanks to my wonderful Mini Greenhouse from Twigz , which I blogged about earlier in the year.

Growing plants in a Twigz Mini Greenhouse is
great fun and a brilliant way to grow your own plants

Once your seedlings are bigger and all risk of frost has passed, plant your little nasturtium plants outdoors. I always plant some with my bush tomatoes which I grow in pots. They are great for keeping pests away and look sooooo pretty too.

Pretty nasturtiums growing
beside my tomatoes

After the flowers die away you will be left with a little green seed. Pick these and pop them into an envelope. Next Spring you will have free seeds to grow your nasturtiums again. 

Look at all these free seeds!
You could also leave the seeds to fall into the surrounding ground and you will see them start growing there again the following year. How easy is that? Easy to grow, great for companion planting, you can eat them AND they look pretty. Why would you NOT want to grow them?

Pop your seeds into an envelope or paper bag and
note what they are and when they were picked

Hugs & kisses,

Lulu xx 

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