Friday, May 21, 2010

Flowering Food - mostly in white

Here are this day's garden stars:

Strawberries are in bloom, some even in tiny baby fruits. Regular running strawberry makes a great groundcover and many of you may already have wild strawberry invading your lawn. For an attractive edger, try runnerless alpine strawberry. This picture of gaint strawberry shows well its relationship to the rose family. Keep your eyes peeled for the pink blossomed variety that will occasionally show up at nurseries.

Giant strawberry has giant blooms. Very different from the demure flowers of alpine strawberry.

Sweet Cicely (Myrrhis odorata) is one of my favourite perennial edibles. It grows and flowers in part shade. The whole plant is edible tasting of sweet anise from its fleshy root through its leaves, green immature seeds that taste like candy to the mature black seeds ground for spice. There is also a native that shares the same common name: Osmorhiza longistylis.

Sweet cicely just before the height of bloom. The ferny foliage adds a delicate touch to this crowded corridor.

Blueberry blossoms en mass are one of those lean down to take a look flowers. They are dainty pinkish white bells that are irresitable to bees. A pretty plant for acidic soil with good moisture holding capacity, they are real stunners in the fall when their leaves turn bright red.

Young blueberry plant alongside iris.

Cabbage and friends are all in shades of buttery yellow. Here the thick purple leaves of red rock mammoth cabbage have sported towers of contrasting pale yellow. I also have bok choy, savoy cabbage and land cress in bloom. Cold resistant brassicas make wonderful additions to both the spring and fall garden. Don't rip them out when you are done with them but leave them when they bolt to produce spray upon spray of waving yellow flower, followed by seed.

Someone came round and asked what that purple leafed flower was. Yes, it's cabbage.

Quirky Sperling Toga Onion sports a spiky hairdo promising seeds for a trade in the near future. This is a very hardy perennial onion that gives greens while the year is long in a coldframe, along with providing a vertical accent for the front of the border.

Sperling toga onion is going to flower. Oh the seeds we shall reap! Yay!

Breaking up the predominance of white, are two lovely little flowers: Johnny Jump ups (Viola tricolor) which add a touch of rainbow to salads or desserts with their edible flowers and the tea plant Catmint (Nepeta cataria). Both of these make lovely edging plants for mostly sun that spill over walkways and self seed charmingly into little nooks and crannies.

Soft purple contrasts with sunny yellow in the children's garden.

One of my new favourite early spring salad plants, English Daisy (Bellis Perennis) is a common lawn weed in certain areas and I wish that I could say the same is true here. I will have to content with the more self controlled growth in my garden of this large flowered variety. Here pictured with the definitely less well behaved Sweet Violet (Viola odarata).

Densely spaced spoon leaves of English daisy with the large violets.

And lastly for today, Rhubarb's foamy blooms light up in the bright morning sunlight. One of best of the strong foliage plants. It is a mighty presence in my garden with leaves the size of placemats or larger taking up 6 square feet of space.


Do you have some food that is flowering in your garden?


Daphne said...

Sadly the radishes which I have to pull to give more room for my lettuce to grow.

Ottawa Gardener said...

Ah well. Lettuce is a good reason. You reminded me though that I want to sprinkle some rattail raddish seeds. I love their blooms (and seed pods).

Anonymous said...

some chives, strawberries, lavender is just starting to bloom and some other herbs.

Thomas said...

Those onions are really interesting. Unfortunately, my strawberries are producing very well this year. However, I'm very excited about have alpines blooming at the moment.

Christine said...

Chives, raspberries, strawberries, parsley, broccoli raab and a few overachievers on one of my tomato plants.

Publisher, Anarchist Potager

jen said...

this is my first visit to your blog and I've been here all day :). What brought me here was a google search for weed daisies and I've been stalking your garden since. This is our first year with a veggie garden and I'm so excited (despite how small it is) I can hardly stand it. Your plants are impressive! The only flower we have right now in the veggies is on our cherry tomato plant and it just popped up today! Thanks for the great read, I'll be back for sure