8 Best Flowers to Grow in Your Cutting Garden
By Danica Dodson, Arlington Parks & Recreation
Posted on May 07, 2020, May 07, 2020

birght tulips on a turquoise table

Who doesn’t love keeping a vase or two of freshly cut flowers around the house? You may not want to cut down the flowers in your garden because they look so lovely out in your yard, so this is where a cutting garden comes in. A cutting garden is grown specifically so that you can cut the flowers and bring them indoors for a beautiful accent to your home. APRD’s Urban Forestry Land Manager, Wendy Pappas, compiled this list of 8 flowers that are fast-growing and require little maintenance, making them the perfect addition to your cutting garden.

  1. Black Eyed Susan

    This sun-loving plant flowers during summer through fall and will attract pollinators like bees and butterflies. They need to be kept moist, but not too wet - just enough to keep them from drying out. These flowers are suited for USDA hardiness zones 3-9. They can flower in orange, yellow, or red and are very reliable bloomers.

  2. Sunflower

    Nothing says summer like a vase of freshly cut sunflowers in your home. Sunflowers are a favorite among many gardeners as they are easy to grow and can serve several purposes. After this flower is done growing, you can dry the center and harvest the sunflower seeds to eat, or save them for replanting next year. Sunflowers can grow as tall as 5 feet high and come in many varieties.
  3. Rose

    The rose is a classic beauty with a wonderful scent, and there are over 150 different types of this flower. Roses do best in moist, well-drained soil with plenty of sun. They benefit from seasonal fertilization and should be pruned periodically. One drawback is that they are susceptible to fungus and disease, but these perennials will continue to bloom year after year if kept healthy.
  4. Daffodil

    Daffodils are one of the easiest bulbs to grow and they are suited for USDA zones 3-9. These flowers come in yellow, orange, or white and should be planted in the fall to bloom in spring. Daffodils have a long lifespan and will continue to bloom year after year. After they bloom, leave the green parts of the plant alone and only remove any leaves once they turn brown. Leaves stay green and provide nutrients for the bulb to rebuild before the next bloom, so be sure not to remove the leaves while they are still green.
  5. Hydrangea

    This flower comes in many colors and varieties, and enjoys being grown mostly in the shade with a little morning sun. Hydrangeas do best in moist, well-drained soil but can also handle wetter soil. They often will not need any pruning and are one of the easiest flowers to grow. An interesting fact about hydrangeas is that the color of the blooms can change based on the pH level of the water they receive. Acidic soil will encourage blue flowers, while alkaline or neutral soil will encourage a pinker color.
  6. Peony

    Peonies are hardy in USDA zones 3-8. Full to partial sun is ideal for this spring-blooming flower. Peonies have a nice smell and come in many colors including red, white, yellow, and various shades of pink. The large fragrant bloom makes a lovely addition to an indoor bouquet and will light up any area.
  7. Allium

    Strangely enough, this gorgeous flowering plant comes from the same family as garlic and onions, though it is not edible. It is suited for hardiness zones 4-10 and grows a large purple ball-shaped bloom at the top, and can grow anywhere from 1 to 4 feet in height. When crushed, the plant will smell like an onion, but does not emit a strong smell normally. Allium likes to be grown in full sun and will bloom in spring or summer depending on the variety, and does best in well-drained acidic soil.
  8. Tulip

    Tulips are a favorite among cutting gardeners because of their vivid colors that add life to any indoor arrangement. They are suited for hardiness zones 3-8, and most varieties need to be replanted every year, as they do not rebloom. Tulips do best in rich soil with some organic matter added to the soil, and with full to partial sun. It is important to note that tulips may need protection from squirrels and deer because they enjoy eating the bulbs.

The list goes on for great cutting garden flowers – these are just a few of our favorites! One tip for cutting your flowers is to cut the stem with sharp pruners at an angle, which will help with proper water uptake. Be sure to place all flowers in water immediately after cutting.

With Mother’s Day coming up this weekend, a fresh hand-cut floral arrangement from your garden would make a lovely gift for Mom this year (or in future years if you are just starting your garden)! We hope you try some of these flowers in your own cutting garden and enjoy accenting your home with these beautiful blooms.

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