Cutting gardens can be fun, add creativity to your days and profitable if your looking for additional income. I have had cutting gardens for years. One of the things I like best is that it seems to open my eyes to the endless uses for flowers and how to arrange them creatively.
There are different kinds of flowering plants are suitable for a cutting garden. Long-stemmed annuals or perennials are most useful. Colorful annual flowers usually dominate cutting gardens because they are enthusiastic bloomers. When you cut their blossoms it only encourages them to produce more so you have a never-ending supply of fresh flowers.
Daisies are enormously popular annuals and combine well with so many other flowers. They also hold up well when cut so their uses are endless.
Long blooming perennials have a place in the cutting garden as well as in the more formal
flower border. Coral-bells and fringed bleeding heart will produce flowers all season, especially if they are regularly picked. Purple coneflowers and black-eyed susan’s produce bold, bristly seed heads that are ideal for floral crafts. Perennials can be depended upon to bloom next season. There is no need to replant that part of the cutting garden and this saves time and money for the gardener.
Herbs are great plants for a cutting garden. They add great color and background to bouquets and last long when picked. They also add a nice aromatic quality to a bouquet. I often make arrangements with just herbs. The Kitchen Bouquet is one of my most popular arrangements. This bouquet has fresh herbs that can be used in the kitchen for cooking but still is pleasing to the eye. Some people use them fresh and others dry them for later use.
Another of my popular cutting flowers are those that can be dried for arrangements and crafting uses. Statice, money plant, and Chinese lanterns are only a few that fit into this category.
Foliage plants are equally important in that contribute texture and color to both fresh and dried arrangements. Lambs Ears, silver-leafed artemisia varieties and lavender contribute grayish-silver foliage that makes a bold statement in arrangements.
The following is a partial list of suggested annuals, perennials and foliage plants. There are many more flowers that can be used for cutting flowers. Research and your personal likes and dislikes will add to you own personal list.
Annuals for a cutting garden
Ageratum (Floss Flower)
Amaranthus caudatus (Love Lies Bleeding)
Ammi majus (Bishop’s Flower)
Bells of Ireland
Callisstephus chinesis (China Aster)
Centaurea (Bachelors’ Button)
Cleome (Spider Flower)
Dimorphoteca sinuata (Cape Marigold)
Nigella damascena (Love-In-A- Mist)
Reseda Odorata (Mignonette)
Annual Cutting flowers good for drying and crafting
Celosia, cristate (Cockscomb)
Celosia, plumosa (Feather)
Celosia, spicata (Wheat)
Gomphrena (Globe Amaranth)
Gypsophila (Baby’s Breath)
Scabiosa (Pincushion flower)
Perennials good for a cutting garden
Chrysanthemum, such as Shasta daisy
Dianthus, deltoids (Pinks)
Echinacea (Purple Coneflower)
Heuchera (Coral Bells)
Kniphofia (Red Hot Poker)
Nicotiana (Flowering Tobacco)
Poppy, Shirley or Iceland
Rudbeckia (Black-Eyed Susan)
Solidago (Goldenrod… pretty but use with care, many people have allergies to these)
Perennials good for drying and crafting
Echinops exaltatus (Globe Thistle)
Gypsophila (Baby’s Breath)
Achillea (Yarrow) This plant is so versitle. It’s great for dying and coloring
Foliage for a cutting garden
Euphorbia (Snow on the Mountain)
Overall any flower is good for drying and crafting, some just dry easier.
There is a follow up article on how to dry flowers: http://thegardenersrake.com/how-to-dry-your-cut-flowers
Watch for an article on how to make flower potpourri. Flower potpourri will make use of any slightly damaged flowers in your garden not suitable for bouquets.