Top Ten Herbs & Flowers to Put in a Garden

Herbs are ideal plants to add to your flower garden. They can be quite ornamental, some with lovely flowers, and some with interesting foliage. They add color and texture to any garden design. Select plants with compatible growing needs to create a garden using 10 herbs and flowers.

Echinacea

Echinacea is an herb with beautiful purple flowers. Roots and leaves are usually used for herbal teas, and sometimes the flower petals are included in tea blends. Purple echinacea flowers have daisy-like structure, with a rust-colored center and purple petals. Echinacea is a perennial plant that is easy to grow from seeds, divisions or transplants.

Cosmos

Cosmos are annual flowering plants that have daisy-like blossoms and lacy foliage. Cosmos plants are tall and graceful, with a blossom at each tip of the branching stems. Plant cosmos seeds directly in the garden in the spring. One type of cosmos has yellow and golden flowers. The second type blooms in white and shades of pink and purple.

Daisies

Daisies are perennial favorites in any garden. The fresh white petals and cheery yellow flower centers brighten any room of the house when used as cut flowers. Shasta daisy hybrids are very hardy. The clumps multiply rapidly, increasing the number of daisies in your garden.

Lavender

Lavender has culinary uses as well as being one of the most sought-after flowering herbs for fragrance. The flowers are most fragrant for sachet or potpourri use if they are cut just before the flower buds open. Allow the flowers to open in the garden, and lavender provides lovely purple flower spikes in a perennial bed or along a border.

Marigolds

Marigolds are annual flowers. They help in the garden by repelling soil nematodes from tomato and pepper roots, and they repel above-ground garden pests as well. Marigold seeds can be planted directly in the garden, or indoors for early transplants. Choose a marigold variety from a small 8-inch type up to a 36-inch variety with large, 4-inch blossoms.

Borage

Borage is an attractive herb with silvery-gray foliage and small blue flowers adored by bees. Borage is useful in herbal teas, or use the flowers in salads or float them in cool drinks. An annual plant, borage reseeds itself easily.

Rosemary

The heady scent and flavor of rosemary makes it a favorite herb both in the garden and in the kitchen. Use sprigs of rosemary to flavor meats, fish, soups and stews. Rosemary is a shrubby perennial in warmer climates. It requires mulching and protection where light winter freezes occur. Where winter weather is severe, rosemary can be potted to bring indoors, or take cuttings to grow indoors over the winter.

Sage

Sage is a tough, woody herb with pungent leaves used to flavor meats, soups and stews. It blooms and sets seeds biennially. Plant sage two years in a row, and then allow the blooming plants to reseed each year for a constant supply of fresh sage. Sage plants produce spikes of pretty blue flowers.

Dill

The feathery, fern-like foliage of dill makes it a lovely addition to the herb or flower garden. Dill plants are 3 to 4 feet tall at maturity, so plant dill at the back of the garden. Use dill seeds and dill weed (the needle-like leaves) in recipes. Dill is a host plant for some species of butterflies and will attract them to your garden.

Parsley

Parsley is an annual with a deep taproot that makes transplanting difficult. Plant parsley seeds directly in the garden. Known mostly as a garnish, parsley is also used in teas and salads. It is easy to grow and is a host plant for some species of swallowtail butterflies.

Keywords: herb garden, flower garden, favorite herbs, favorite flowers

About this Author

Fern Fischer writes about quilting and sewing, and she professionally restores antique quilts to preserve these historical pieces of women's art. She also covers topics of organic gardening, health, rural lifestyle, home and family. For over 35 years, her work has been published in print and online.