Farmhouse garden flowers and herbs enchant with their lush blooms. But that’s not all: they attract insects to the garden as pollinators, protect fruit and vegetables from pest infestation and thus safeguard the harvest – in other words, they are flowering plant protection.
It is not enough to grow vegetables with care. One has the duty to arrange it according to its colors and frame it with flowers.” The 15th-century instruction for the design of a monastery garden is as relevant today as it was then. And what would a kitchen or cottage garden be without roses and marigolds? Agricultural scientists have now proven that so-called flowering strips next to wheat fields not only delight walkers but also significantly increase yields. With its pollen and nectar supply, the colorful border provides food for ladybugs, predatory wasps, and many other beneficial insects. Pests, on the other hand, are hard to be found in the vicinity of the nature strips. If you take advantage of this effect when growing fruit and vegetables, you can largely dispense with other plant protection measures.
Which flowers serve as natural plant protection?
Summer flowers from the daisy family such as cocklebur and coneflower are considered to be true pick-me-ups for the soil. The fast-growing plants cover the area like a carpet in a short time and leave even stubborn weeds such as goutweed, creeping buttercup, and Franciscus little chance. Tagetes, zinnias, and marigolds can do even more: they attract stem and root lice that persist in the soil and kill them as soon as they penetrate their roots.
Roses and lavender (left) are a popular combination. Ants avoid the vicinity of the tart-smelling semi shrubs, and the few aphids that nevertheless settle on rose petals are kept at bay by the tits. Marigolds (right) kill off nematodes that persist in the soil before they can attack the roots of onions, tomatoes, and potatoes. Sown between the rows, the popular medicinal plant acts as a soil cure.
The damage patterns of the troublemakers on vegetable plants are often mistaken for nutrient deficiency because the culprits are not visible to the naked eye. The foliage of carrots suddenly wilts and the roots become leggy, the tips of onion shoots turn brown, and potatoes and tomatoes start to decline. If you suspect it, you should not puzzle around for long, but put an end to the spook by sowing a particularly effective seed mixture of several defensive plants (for example, seed mixture “Soil Therapy”).
How to attract beneficial insects?
Umbelliferous plants such as dill and coriander indirectly prove to be pest deterrents. The flowering herbs attract countless hoverflies. For the offspring of these harmless flying artists, the aphid colonies on young bean or pea shoots are a veritable feast. During development, a single larva consumes up to 700 of the annoying leaf suckers.
Nasturtium is universally applicable. As ground cover on the tree discs of fruit trees, it drives blood lice away and chases whiteflies out of the greenhouse. In the vegetable patch, the plants develop a great attraction to the cabbage white butterfly. The female butterflies are fooled by the strong mustard oil smell and lay their eggs on the cress leaves. This ensures the survival of the beautiful butterfly without having to worry about caterpillar damage and unappetizing excrement nodules on savoy cabbage and kale.
What natural enemies do pests have?
Encouraging predators is the best strategy for giving pests a pass in naturalistic gardens. ichneumon flies feed on nectar and other sweet plant juices. Their offspring prefer protein-rich foods, such as aphids, fruit flies, or other insect pests. The wasp places its eggs directly into the animal food source with a long laying stinger. Within a few days, new wasps develop from the well-fed larvae. What remains is the empty shell of the host.
Ladybugs and their larvae can not only destroy entire aphid colonies in a short time, scientists have discovered that the beetles even scare their prey. At the sight of them, the aphids emit scents (pheromones) with which they warn their conspecifics. The more of them there are in the air, the faster the pests start to retreat.
Flowering neighbors for fruits and vegetables
|expels aphids on fruit trees and
whiteflies. Catch plant for bean lice
and cabbage whites suppresses root
weeds such as Giersch
|in May, sow on the tree disc or
the bed edge. In the vegetable garden,
e.B. as an addition to tuber fennel and celery,
do not choose ranked varieties
|attracts gall wasps
and other natural enemies
of cabbage white and coal owl
|particularly effective in seed mixtures for flower strips,
together with buckwheat and fodder Feb
|Ants, lice, earth fleas,
and bedbugs avoid the proximity
of shrubs in the long term
|Hybrid varieties (ornamental lavender) contain
fewer essential oils,
so the defense effect is weaker
|Pitch-clod( Silene viscaria)
||increases the resistance
of all beet neighbors,
especially bush and pole beans
|The extract obtained from the seeds contains plant
hormones that promote root growth
|attracts ladybugs and promotes
growth and resistance of
|increases the content of essential oils in medicinal and condiments,
e.B. sage, mint, and thyme
||decimated root balls and
wireworms drive out Colorado
beetles and cabbage moth
|as nectar and pollen dispenser for beneficial organisms
use only unfilled varieties and selections
|Zinnia (Zinnia Angustifolia
and Z. elegans)
|destroys harmful root balls (nematodes)
and is considered a butterfly magnet
|Pre-cultivation in the pot from March, no-sowing between
the vegetable rows at the beginning of May at the earliest,
as a nectar supplier preferably sow unfilled varieties
|Forget-me-not (Myosotis sylvatica)
||sells raspberry beetles and strawberry
|in spring as an edging for the strawberry bed and large
areas on the raspberry dams plant