Watercolour in Moleskine Folio 200gsm Nature Journal
As I work among my flowers, I find myself talking to them, reasoning and remonstrating with them, and adoring them as if they were human beings. Much laughter I provoke among my friends by so doing, but that is of no consequence. We are on such good terms, my flowers and I!
Celia Thaxter, 1835-1894
Orange Nasturtiums from my garden last summer – I had to pull out just about the whole batch (but not before I’d collected a lot of the seeds!) as they got attacked by a white, sticky fungus
Nasturtiums are a gardener’s dream. They are virtually carefree once established. Snails don’t seem to be interested in them. They will even self-seed and come back the next year in mild climates. I look forward to their return each year; it signals that summer is here at last.
For Growing Nasturtiums I have found that sunny spots work best, (too much shade and you have a lot of greenery with only a few flowers) even though they might need more watering, especially if you have a quick-draining soil like ours in Tarlton, Gauteng, South Africa. Nasturtiums seed so prolifically that, after your first initial planting, you never have to buy seeds again. At the end of the flowering season I usually collect hundreds of seeds from the plants, a job in itself very enjoyable, as I sit picking out the round pea-like seeds amongst the leaves.
Sow Nasturtium seeds once the weather warms up, either in early spring or early summer depending on your location. Sow the seeds about 10 to 15 inches apart, and about 1 inch deep. Water immediately after planting. Then do not water for another 10 days. If you choose a climbing variety, make sure to provide a support for the plant and train it as it grows. Within a few weeks you should have healthy plants with flowers, and prolific flowers in due course!
Go to Blissful Housewife for some great culinary uses of Nasturtiums, like this great starter, below – Nasturtium blossoms stuffed with a mixture of cream cheese or ricotta cheese, chives and pesto.
“Just looking at nasturtiums can make you smile – eating them might even make you giggle!”