There have been a lot of questions about ‘trap crops’ and what plants, other than Geraniums, are recommended.
Along with Geraniums as a trap crop, other flowers used as companion plants and intercropping
practices may be from flower varieties whose seeds are easy to save. Some may be started in
cells under grow lights where others prefer to be direct sown to your dedicated garden plot when the
ground is fit. Just like vegetables, timing and understanding climate zones are important to know what
varieties grow best and what flowers will bloom early, mid and late season.
This will benefit your strategy when it comes time to plant or embellish what you have already planted
in the past.
Having different garden compositions of height, texture, shape, size and colour in conjunction with
bloom times along with these combinations of trap crops, you will be encouraging host specific pests to
These host specific pests will remain on the desired plant or trap crop which will provide a breeding
ground for the beneficial predators that you want. When nature is balanced you will observe a mixture
of both pests and beneficial predators in and around your garden. As the pest population shrinks, the
key is to have flowering plants bloom at different times and throughout the season so that these beneficial
predators and parasites will use the pollen and nectar from these blooms as food.
This is why the need of growing a variety of flowers that bloom at different times are necessary
throughout the season.
An example in climate zones 3 – 5 with 5 being our homestead location , bulbs such as daffodils will
appear early followed by lilac shrubs, pansies or violas and petunias which are ornamental annuals
throughout the summer and native plants such as purple coneflower (echinacea) which is a perrenial
and will bloom mid summer and into the fall.
Along with other sizes, shapes, colours and bloom times of native and ornamental varieties, this will
support the composition needed to have a healthy garden habitat.