11 January 2016

Bees love borage

Blue flowers are always welcome in my garden. Most of them are for my pleasure since it's my favourite colour, but I always plant borage for the bees. They love the flowers!

It's best to grow borage directly from seed exactly where you want it in your garden, though, if you want to start your seeds early, you can sow single seeds in small pots. I find small peat pots are good because they eventually rot into the soil when planted in the garden. This method of transplanting doesn't disturb the plant's roots.

There is a white-flowering borage (Borago officinalis 'Alba') but I prefer the deep blue flowers. Aren't they gorgeous?

Borage snapshot

Family: Boraginaceae
Species: Borago officinalis
Ideal situation: sunny position
Suitable for: attracting bees
Habit: hardy sprawling annual, which grows to approximately 80 cm
Needs: well-drained soil
Maintenance: borage self-seeds easily so remove seed heads if you do not want new plants. Deadheading flowers prolongs the flowering season. 
Propagation: best grown from seed in spring or summer
Difficulty: easy
Fun fact: flowers can be crystallised for cake decoration. You can find instructions to do that here.

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