In this top photo is a small field of wheat that we inter-planted with Cilantro. We experimented with this combination for several different reasons. One being that the small delicate and lacy white flowers of the Cilantro plant is one of the biggest attractions for the lady bug. As organic gardeners, the lady bug is your biggest helper in keeping aphids under control. I save seed from my Cilantro and always keep it growing everywhere in my garden. I plant it in the fall and it will be up early in the spring chanting with blooms for the lady bug to come. Another benefit to this combination is that the thick mat formed by the Cilantro helped to choke out the weeds and did not interfere with the wheat germination.
In this photo are some of my yellow Cannes. Cannes are another beneficial plant you will find throughout my garden. In each clump of Cannes is a habitat for a whole host of life. This is where the lizards, toads, garden snakes and spiders live and hide. These creatures of God are very important for a healthy garden. They feed on all sorts of damaging insects and animals. Things like grasshoppers, squash bugs, moles and more. It's very important to remember to never use chemicals and pesticides or baits on the bad guys because you will be at risk of harming the good guys. Nature will run its course as things come into balance with each other. Cannes are also a huge contributor to our compost. They spread like wildfire so there is always an abundance of them to add to the pile. They also contain properties that help break down your compost faster.
The Monarch Butterfly adds beauty as well as being a major contributor for pollination. I scatter Dill and Fennel in all sorts of odd places throughout my garden for the Monarch Caterpillar to feed on until its transformation. I still seem to end up with plenty of dill for my ever important pickles. The Dill is also beneficial in helping deter harmful insects like the squash bug and cucumber beetles away from my vegetables. They all work together and what I end up with are clouds of butterflies swarming around my flowers in late summer and early fall. It's an awesome site that I never get tired of watching. The Sunflower is always so bright with its sunny face looking towards the sunrise. I make sure to plant it on the west side of the property so I can be sure to enjoy the view. It's always an annual I plant every year in my garden. It is a beneficial plant for my sweet corn. It acts as a trap crop for the dreaded stink bugs that might otherwise cause damage to my corn. It also attracts and feeds bumble bees so they may go about their business of pollinating. Sunflowers are also an excellent substitute for sweet corn when growing the "Three Sisters" way of native American Indians. Your beans grow up the stocks of the sunflowers and squash or pumpkins grow very nicely beneath the tall flowers. I have harvested and dried the huge seed heads for the personal pleasure of using the seeds for my homemade breads. It is quite a task that I don't always have time for. This year the seeds will assist with the feed supplies needed to keep my chickens happy and healthy.
Welcome to Thyme Square Gardens. I am an organic gardener in Southeast Texas with a passion for preserving heirlooms and herbs for future generations. I rant about growing healthy gardens by incorporating natural habitats in and around your garden. I believe that Native Plants and Companion Planting play an important role in both your garden and to the health and future of our planet. I love to bake, so please enjoy some of my special recipes. Visit me at Natural Family Today Magazine were I share my love for natural gardening methods. Please take a stroll and share a cold glass of iced tea with me and please drop me a note in the comments! I love hearing from you! Happy Gardening! ~ Pammy