Attracting Polinators to Your Garden

I've always wanted to plant a row of flowers in my vegetable garden, but with everything else to do (from starting seeds, tilling and preparing the soil, and getting everything planted) I've just never gotten around to it ... until this year. Although I started my flower row a bit later than I would have liked, I (finally!) planted a row of flowers in my veggie garden last April or early May and am so glad I did!

Planting flowers in my vegetable garden has been a success for a few reasons...

  1. I like flowers and think they should be everywhere. Yes, E-V-E-R-Y-W-H-E-R-E!
  2. The flowers make the vegetable garden look a lot nicer.
  3. I have lots of flowers for the house (admittedly, I haven't done too much cutting of the flowers, although I have had a vase or 2 of fresh cut flowers in the kitchen all throughout the summer).
  4. The flowers attract an absolute TON of pollinators to the garden and to the veggies.

So, while reasons 1, 2, & 3 are good ones for me personally, reason #4 is turning out to be, hands down, the best reason to plant some flowers in a vegetable garden!

Planting Flowers to Attract Pollinators

My row of flowers is about 75 feet long and contains zinnias, various types of dwarf sunflowers, cosmos, and amaranthus. I planted everything from seed (directly seeded in the garden) and pretty much just used whatever flower seed I had on hand. Next year I'll try to plan a bit better to include some other flowers too.

But, these types of flowers are definitely attracting pollinators! When I walked down the row this morning, I counted over 60 butterflies and a zillion bees and wasps (ok, I didn't really count the bees, but there were a ton). It was like the Times Square of the insect world.  Fuzzy, buzzy, flying pandemonium!

So, if you'd like to attract more pollinators to your vegetable garden, just plant some flowers nearby too (especially zinnias!) and you'll definitely attract lots of bees and butterflies.

Here are a few photos of my flower 'cutting garden' this morning. I planted the row of flowers in the only space available at the time -- it's in between rows of asparagus and Jerusalem artichokes (both of which get pretty tall). I don't know if it makes any difference if the flowers are just a few feet or 20 or more feet from the annual vegetables or not, but next year I think I'll try to plant them closer to my other veggies (the asparagus and artichokes don't really need help with pollination!).

Planting Flowers in a Vegetable Garden

Although all of the flowers seem to be popular with the pollinators,
it seems that the zinnias and sunflowers are the real favorites of the bees & butterflies!

Planting a Flower Row in a Vegetable Garden to Attract Bees and Butterflies

I love these little Teddy Bear Sunflowers, so cute!

Planting Flowers in a Vegetable Garden

Even Renard likes the row of flowers (almost as much as he likes the shade from the Jerusalem Artichokes!). Isn't he the most handsome dog ever?

Aug 13 2014
Posted in: Flowers, Vegetables

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August 14, 2014

First, Renard IS the most handsome dog ever. I can say that because Amos is the most ADORABLE dog ever. The two "ever" dogs.

My rose of sharon bushes are a bee fest just now. I've never been able to attract butterflies. That would be nice to have around. I guess I am just greedy, not being satisfied with my hummingbirds.

One of the latter has gotten quite chubby. She is very hoggish about the four feeders I have. I don't think she's going to have any problem with her migration.


August 14, 2014

Renard thanks you Myrtle. And yes, amos IS adorable! Do you still have your hummingbird feeders hanging together? Those cute little hummies are really little devils in disguise... I could entertain myself for hours just watching ours chase each other around!

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