While flowers look beautiful blooming in the garden, or in pots and window boxes adorning your porch and patio, there’s nothing quite like the sight and scent of freshly cut flowers gracing the inside of your home. How to achieve the best of both worlds? Plant a cutting garden.
As the name implies, a cutting garden is a designated area for planting flowers specifically designed to be cut. The trick is to nurture this garden to abundance so that you have plenty for cutting, and an ample supply left behind to admire while outside.
The first step to planting a cutting garden is choosing the right spot. Look for an area that gets plenty of sun, has soil that is well-draining, and offers quick access to water.
The next step involves choosing the right flowers. While just about any flower looks lovely when perched in a vase, certain varieties lend themselves to cutting, thanks to qualities like long, strong stems, and a long life post-cut. The experts at Martha Stewart suggest the following:
– Sweet peas
– Baby’s breath
– Bachelor’s buttons
– Queen Anne’s lace
– Sea Holly
– Coral Bells
Beyond choosing the right varieties of flowers, there are other factors to consider when planting your cutting garden. For example, be sure to mix things up in terms of color, shape, size and texture. Adding foliage to your cut arrangements adds interest and appeal, so consider greens such as hosta leaves, ferns, ornamental grasses and even boughs of pine.
When you’re ready to cut, marthastewart.com suggests cutting when color first appears on the buds. And always cut in the cooler mornings as opposed to the intense heat of the afternoon. To keep flowers as fresh as possible in the vase, cut off any leaves that fall below the water line to prevent bacteria from growing in the vase.