10 easy-to-grow flowers for the beginner gardener

Do you half-jokingly describe yourself as having a “brown thumb”? The evil twin to the green pixies, this description applies to anyone who has the unfortunate ability to kill everything they touch. Take heart: there are some flower plants that are incredibly easy to grow. In fact, here are ten of them:

Sunflowers – These bright, beautiful flowers can grow to over 16 feet in height, although there are varieties that have been cultivated for indoor planting. Regardless, these are remarkably tough plants and are easy to grow. Sunflowers thrive in direct sunlight. Find a well-drained location and place seeds around two to three feet in the ground (or pot). Make sure that the soil is nutrient-dense as sunflowers are heavy feeders.

Sweet Peas – Many women love this flower, as they give off a lovely, seductive fragrance. Perfumeries extract the oil from this flower as a base ingredient for their scents. Sweet peas come in a variety of colors and are best suited as an annual border, trellis, or arch. To get the best results, try to sow sweet peas during very late winter or early spring. Do not wait until frost.

Nigella (Love in a mist): These delicate blue flowers sow freely and are not aggressive. Nigellas prefer full sun exposure but do okay in partially shaded areas as well. These plants bloom for several weeks, normally around late spring. Nigella are not so particular about soil quality but do not like sitting in wet soil. Aim for a neutral soil pH.

AquilegiaOtherwise known as columbine, the flower was named after both the eagle (aquila) and the dove (colombus). The petals are suppose to resemble the outspread wings of these birds and are very nice decorative plants. They are mostly springtime plants and can be easily grown from seed. Some varieties come with a unique and intriguing pineapple-like scent.

Californian poppy – A favorite even among hardened gardeners, the poppy is an incredibly easy flower to grow. These colorful annuals thrive in poor, dry soil, and full sunlight. This is the perfect plant for the forgetful gardener.

Nasturtium – These yellow flowers are edible and easy to grow. Nasturtium flowers also bloom quite quickly — so much so that they are considered weeds by some. Studies say that these plants are high in vitamins A, C, and D. Nasturtium flower best in full sun, but can still bloom in partially-shaded locations. They also prefer cool, damp, well-drained soil. These plants do not need supplemental fertilizing. In fact, if you amend the soil with too much nitrogen-rich fertilizer, you will get a lot of dark green foliage and a few flowers.

Marigold – Marigold seeds are easy to handle and grow fast. Marigolds need a lot of sunshine. Sow seeds around a month to six weeks before the last spring frost date. These flowers can grow in most types of soil but prefer moderately fertile, well-drained varieties.

Cranesbill (Hardy Geranium) – These plants are low-maintenance. These carefree bloomers can flourish in a variety of conditions and bloom for most of the year. They require only little to moderate watering, and thrive when exposed to full sunlight. Sow seeds around 12 inches apart.

Fuchsias – Interior designers use fuchsias in hanging baskets or containers. These plants are grown from plugs and come in all colors and shapes. Some fuchsias have very rapid growth and would require regular trimming. Still, fuchsias are versatile and hardy, able to grow practically anywhere.

Pansy – Most children recognize these plants for their cheery faces. These small, sweet flowers grow best in cool springtime conditions. This is a self-seeding perennial that can reach four to 10 inches tall depending on the variety.









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