Wednesday, April 4, 2012

A Welcome Weed

Cerinthe major, also known as honeywort, is a what I call a welcome weed in my garden. I planted it several years ago and never fails to reseeds itself in the fall. While everything is losing its leaves and going dormant for winter, this plant shows some promise and fills in empty spaces.

Even after snow and frost, honeywort is not phased and continues to grow. These are my first flowers of spring, blooming along side my daffodils and pansies.

I planted them close to my espaliered apples. Bees love them and it's possible having them in close proximity to each other helps with pollination. I had such a great apple crop last year.

I'm not sure if I have the plain species or the 'Purpurescens' variety. There is also C. retorta that has a yellow throat peeking out from the purple bracts. I would love to get my hands on some seed!

I highly recommend this annual. Plant it near your fruit trees and hopefully they'll help with pollination as they have with me!