Nasturtiums for Mock
Capers, Salads, Natural Insect Repeller
Nasturtiums are easy to
grow, and an
versatile little plant. Not only can you pickle nasturtium buds
would capers, and put the peppery leaves in salads, but you can
plant the climbing varieties of colorful nasturtium flowers at the base
your apple trees to eradicate
Other insects such as woolly
aphids, aphids, mites and red spider are also repelled from plants if
the nasturtiums are grow next to or under such plants.
Easy to grow nasturtiums bring
cheerful color to any garden
Nasturtiums can be
both a perennial or an
in areas that experience frost. They come
in a range of colors from deep oranges, sunny yellows, reds, creams and
even a rare white. Nasturtium
love a well-drained soil they are good for sunny
positions in rockeries, will cover banks, grow up trees or cascade from
growing nasturtiums choose their site carefully. They like full sun or
a semi-shaded position in frost-free areas. They will grow
in any type
of soil, but if the soil is too rich in nitrogen you will get all
leaves and no flowers.
Sow the nasturtium seeds
the soil in the spring, once the fear of frost is over, or at any warm
time of the year. However, usually you can sow seed in warm-temperate
climates from spring through to early autumn. In cold areas, only plant
these out in the spring. The nasturtium
will germinate in 2-3 weeks and
flowers should appear 10-12 weeks after sowing.
are best left along and neglected once they are established and the
only problems you will experience with your nasturtiums are leaf miner
which leaves a trail across the leaves. To get rid of leaf miner
pyrethrum spray, soapy water spray, garlic spray or a white oil spray.
See our section on natural
pesticides for details.
Using Nasturtiums as a Natural Insect Repeller
the trailing variety up the trunks of apple trees to help with codling
moth. They will also help keep the grass down,
as well as
and other beneficial insects into your garden.
Using Nasturtiums in Salads
also used to be called Jesuit's
Cress, because they were known to use
the leaves as an addition to their salads. The flowers too are edible
and make a colorful display among the green salad leaves. However,
remove the pistils of the flowers as they will be slightly bitter if
you don't. The leaves can be sweated down and used like spinach,
make a great addition to soups.
Make Capers Using Nasturtiums
you wish to make mock
capers from nasturtiums pick the green buds, pour
boiling spiced vinegar over them. Seal and leave for a month before
You can also make
Thinly slice the leaves to taste, and mix with
softened butter. Chill and use on bread or water biscuits.
Finally, take the seeds of
the nasturtium flowers and use them in your
pepper mill as a
substitute for pepper.
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