Use what your garden gives you to, garnish, add flavor, pickle, steam, boil in your tea or add it to a cold glass of lemonade on a hot summer day. Never use flowers sprayed with pesticides or other chemicals. Your garden is the best place to pick from.
Marigold – petals are peppery, tangy and spicy.
Carnations/Dianthus – petals are sweet and perfumed
Hibiscus- cranberry flavor
Lilac- pungent but flowers are citrusy
Bachelor’s Button- petals have a grassy flavor
Bee Balm – minty flavor
Impatiens – no flavor, mostly used as a garnish and candying
Chrysanthemums – petals are a little bitter and range in flavors from peppery to pungent
Viola/Johnny Jump-up – minty flavor used for salads, pastas and fruit dishes
Gladiolas- bland taste, normally stuffed or used to garnish a salad
Lavender- sweet, spicy and perfumed, used in sweet and savory dishes
Nasturtium – sweet floral flavor with a peppery finish. Flowers can be stuffed, petals can be used on a salad or the buds can be pickled like capers. These are the most popular edible flower and the easiest to grow.
Pansy – used mostly for garnish and candying
Rose- perfume flavor which is more pronounced in darker colors. Petals can be used in hot and cold drinks or scattered on desserts. Petals can also be used in a variety of jams.
Sunflowers – use petals for garnish or buds can be steamed like artichokes.