One year, as I was snipping a few nasturtium blooms to decorate a dessert plate, I noticed a few seeds scattered on the deck underneath the pot. They looked like pale, shrivelled peas. There were also a few still hanging on to the plants, in bunches of two or three. I gathered them all up, dried them out on a paper towel, and then stored them away for the winter in a paper envelope. Besides saving nasturtium seeds, each year, there are also fun new varieties to try. I love growing nasturtiums, and add them to my seed list each year.
Nasturtiums are the perfect “spillers” in container arrangements. They’re also edible. Both the young leaves AND the blooms can be tossed into a salad with other garden greens. (Though before you dump in a handful, I’d take a little nibble to make sure you like them first. The leaves can be a bit peppery and too spicy for some.) I love topping salads and desserts with nasturtiums when I’m serving them to company or bringing them to a potluck. It’s amazing how many people don’t realize that they’re edible! Apparently the Incas ate them.
Growing nasturtiums from seed
Nasturtium seeds don’t need to be sown indoors until three weeks before your region’s frost-free date. I also like to pop seeds right into my raised beds once the soil has warmed up.
Here are a few varieties that I enjoy:
* Hummingbird Nasturtiums ‘Aloha Mix’ from Renee’s Garden
* Alaska Mix from Burpee (has lovely variegated foliage—and great flowers, of course)
* Black Velvet Nasturtiums from Botanical Interests
* Phoenix Nasturtiums from Park Seed (I love the serrated edges!)
* Nasturtium Baby Rose, a 2019 All-America Selections winner
Do you have any nasturtium favourites that you can recommend?