Grow Edible Flowers in Your Garden

Edible flowers have many uses, including making colourful and tasty additions to your cooking, and interesting edible decorations in summer drinks!

Below are common edible flowers that you can try growing in your own garden.

Edible flower options

Borage

  • Delicate and pretty star-shaped blue flowers that are easy to grow.
  • Tastes similar to cucumber with a fresh, cool flavour that isn’t overpowering.
  • Widely used in fish and cheese dishes. The flowers also make a beautiful addition to salads and iced drinks.
  • To make borage tea, boil the flowers in water for 10 minutes.
  • Crystallise with sugar and use them as cake decorations.

Calendula

  • One of the easiest flowers to grow.
  • Flowers vary in colour from bright yellows and oranges to two toned cream and bronze types, or look out for silver and peach tones.

Chive flowers

  • A delicate onion flavoured flower of the herb chives.
  • Once opened up the young pink flowers can be used in salads and cold soups.

Hollyhock

  • Upstanding flowers which vary from simple to frilly.
  • Available in a rainbow of colours.
  • Remove the stigma and only use the petals in cooking.
  • Use the petals of hollyhock to add colour to desserts.
  • Blend into fruit salads for contrasting colours.

English Lavender

  • Dark purple flowers that have a rich and heady taste.
  • Add a little to baking such as shortbread, biscuits and muffins.
  • Due to their strong flavour be careful not to use too much in your cooking.

Nasturtiums

  • A hardy annual flower that grows well in a sunny or slightly shady spot.
  • Flowers range from bright yellow, orange and red to creamy lemons.
  • Classic peppery taste, with a hint of spice.
  • Can be added to omelettes, sandwiches, salads and pastas.

Marigolds

  • A bedding plant well known for the explosion of colour they produce for around six months of the year.
  • Available in a wide range of colours from clean yellows and limes and creams to just about every shade thinkable of orange and bronze.
  • A reliable companion plant to help keep aphids away.
  • Marigolds have an Indonesian flavour similar to saffron.

Rosemary

  • Clean, pale, and dark blue flowers that are very aromatic.
  • The flowers have a soft rosemary flavour, similar to the herb leaves used in cooking.
  • A fragrant addition to a fresh salad or enjoyed with roast lamb.

Rose petals

  • Roses are a favourite flower around the world, coming in every shade imaginable, and a huge variety of shapes and sizes.
  • Choose smaller flowers as the petals tend not to bruise as easily.
  • Their soft delicate and musky flavour, similar to vanilla, is enjoyable in jams and jellies, and they are the perfect partner for cake decorating.

Violas

  • Dainty flowers from the same family as pansies, that grow for months on end.
  • Available in all shades of blue and purple, through to reds, citrus tones of orange, lime and lemon, through to whites, creams and pastel antique shades.
  • Has a fresh carrot-type flavour with a rich aroma.
  • A fresh addition on top of muffins and biscuits.

Ideas for using edible flowers

  • Freeze edible flowers into ice cube trays.
  • Make ice blocks with edible flowers and herbs.
  • Add a selection of colourful edible flowers to your next salad or sprinkle over pasta dishes.
  • Add to hot or cold herbal or fruit teas.
  • Try our Lavender Shortbread recipe.

Get creative and try using edible flowers in your next kitchen creation. Check out our edible flowers board on Pinterest!

Get your edible flowers off to the best start with Tui Flower Mix, a high quality planting mix containing the right blend of nutrients to provide sustained flowering throughout the season. We’ve added Acadian seaweed to this mix, for extra-strong healthy plants and potassium to maximise flower production. Use in garden beds, pots, containers and hanging baskets, and watch your plants reach their flowering potential before your eyes!

Note: not all flowers are edible so make sure you identify the flower is before using it. If you are unsure, check with your local garden centre.

 

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Grow Edible Flowers in Your Garden Comments

  • I love seeing people's reactions when I serve meals with flowers added. I grow a range and have just moved so am developing a new garden.

    Elizabeth Pakai

  • I have used edible flowers for a few years - they look fantastic when presenting food to guests and also can be used for companion planting

    Lynne Scott

  • Are sweet pea flowers and their seed pods edible?

    YVONNE MORELAND

  • Hi Yvonne, this is a great question. Sweet pea flowers are toxic, and not recommended to be used in any sort of cooking whatsoever. It can be confusing as all parts of garden peas Pisum sativum and snow peas are edible, but sweet peas are a different plant name therefore should not be confused with garden peas. All parts of sweet peas are poisonous - especially the flowers and seeds. Thanks, Tui Team

    jenna