I’ve been growing cut flowers for what feels like my whole life and have been selling bouquets for a few years now. Over that time, some of my favourite flowers have held fast, and others have changed drastically. With each year, I learn new techniques for arranging my flowers, my flower farming business grows, and I find new ways to have a thriving cut flower garden in my cold climate and short growing season!
The flowers I’ve included in this list are those I had the most success with in 2023 and plan to grow again in my cutting garden in 2024. If you’re a budding flower farmer, beginner cut flower grower, or anything in between, you’ll find something to love in this list!
Best flowers for your cold climate Cut Flower Garden
1. Bells of Ireland
After three years of trying, I finally succeeded with my Bells of Ireland plants last year! I finally had decent enough germination, and I had enough plants that I didn’t have to hoard them for seeds in secret. I love their minty, lemony scent, and all my bouquet subscribers loved them in their arrangements! I hope my Bells of Ireland patch will naturalize now, as I left many plants behind!
Last year was the first time I successfully grew borage after a couple of years of trying. While it’s not a flower that many people would say is their favourite, it is cut-and-come-again and a good way to get some blue when blue is hard to find. Borage also makes a lovely texture in bouquets!
This was a new ornamental grass for me last year, and I was surprised by how much I liked and used it. I didn’t realize it was cut-and-come-again, which was a very nice surprise. I’m not usually a big fan of grasses, but I’ll always have Broomcorn in my garden now!
4. Burgundy Spike Amaranth
I finally got this to work last year and couldn’t be happier! This spike will continue to be a staple in my cutting garden, as it is super useful in fall arrangements and I love the colour. I’m also hoping this patch will produce lots of volunteers.
5. Coral Charm Peonies
I was supposed to disbud this one, but time got away from me and I’m glad I didn’t. It got away from me and bloomed, and I was absolutely in love. I can’t wait to see more blooms from this plant in years to come. I might need to order a few more roots of it this fall, as I love the colour and can’t wait to arrange with it when it has matured!
I always love glads, but these were the nicest plants I’ve grown in years! It can be hard to make arrangements with glads, but I feel like I figured out some tricks this year and my CSA customers loved the arrangements I made with them.
Related: How to Grow Glads in a Short Growing Season, How to Start Gladiolus Bulbs Indoors, How to Overwinter Glads in a Cold Climate
7. Holy Basil
Basil doesn’t typically grow well for me, but this variety does. I finally found a basil that works for me for cut flower arrangements, and I will definitely be using it year after year! I love the smell, and it works well for tinctures (if you’re into that sort of thing). Holy basil is now the holy grail basil variety on my flower farm.
Honeywort was new to me last year and was a very pleasant surprise in my cut flower garden. I loved using it as an unexpected green in bouquets and especially loved the purple colour at the end. It’s cut and come again and easy to save seeds from, which is a bonus, as well!
9. Marigolds (as greenery)
I used marigolds for greenery out of desperation one day and was surprised that I liked them for this purpose so much. They really hold a bouquet together and fluff it out!
10. Rainbow Quartet Stock
This was only the second time that I’ve had the Rainbow Quartet variety, and I forgot how gorgeous it is. It is, without a doubt, the most beautiful stock I have ever grown in my life. I had a hard time cutting steams from it because I didn’t want to see it go. The seeds can be hard to find because everyone wants this flower in their garden!
I grew a 40-foot row of statice last year, and it was finally enough for all of my dried flower needs. I even grew enough that I might be able to be less stingy about putting them in bouquets this year. Statice are such a versatile and hardy flower that no cut flower grower should be without!
Happiness is a 40-foot row of zinnias. I walked that row so many times last year, and it always made me smile. I saved seeds from all of my favourite varieties, and I can’t wait to see what I get this year!
Want to know what I was planting in 2022? Check out this post!
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READY TO GROW YOUR OWN BEAUTIFUL CUT FLOWER GARDEN WITHOUT THE HASSEL?
I’ve taken all the guesswork out of creating a cut flower garden with my e-book, Cut Flowers Made Simple. Whether you’re a farmer florist, a beginner gardener, or anything in between, you’ll be able to start your own cut flower garden, with or without seed starting, growing annual flowers.