I dare say that there are not many people aware of the fact that you actually can devour flowers served in salads, soups, and drinks. They can also be served in sauces and desserts!
Now of course not all flowers are tasty and not all are edible as some are definitely poisonous. There are many aspects of utilizing edibles that need to be followed.
Do not attempt to eat flowers from a florist, nurseries, or garden center unless you know they are organic. The use of pesticides in the commercial world makes it highly unlikely you can find edible flowers that have not been compromised by the use of some spray.
So what do you do?
You’re better off to grow your own flowers from seeds. There is one caution here: just confirm the flowers you think are edible really are edible.
To that end, I have provided a chart of the most popular edibles, but it is not a totally complete list. This page will provide details on edible flowers and also a couple of recipes.
Your flowers grown on your own plot should be harvested in the morning or later in the afternoon when the water content of the flower is high. Your best bet is to pick flowers that are vigorous and completely devoid of any bug eaten spots or diseased areas.
The flowers you do decide to harvest should be washed completely by placing them in a bath of salt water. Invigorate them by putting them into a container of ice water for thirty to sixty seconds and let them drain on paper towels.
The Storage of Your Edible Flowers
The best method of storage is to place flowers in a glass of water and place in the fridge. You can actually store flowers for a day in a plastic bag in the fridge, but the real goal is to use them within several hours of harvesting.
There are things you should consider when starting your edible flower garden.
The Considerations of Edible Flowers for Your Recipes
One of the considerations that should be made with edible flowers are those who suffer from asthmatic conditions could have allergy type reactions to the consumption of flowers.
People with hay fever should also approach the eating of flowers with some caution. I would not eat flowers that have been harvested from a roadside. They could easily be corrupted by emissions from cars or trucks.
In the beginning, use flowers in your recipes in small amounts, especially if this procedure is brand new to you. You know too much of good thing could end in digestion issues.
I have provided below a chart of some of the poisonous flowers that should be avoided. Please be aware that this list does not include plants, trees or shrubs that can also be considered poisonous.
|Common Name||Botanical Name|
|Anemone (windflower)||Anemone spp.|
|Atamasco lily||Zephyranthes spp.|
|Autumn crocus||Colchicum autumnale|
|Azalea||Azalea spp. (Rhododendron spp.)|
|Calla (calla lily)||Calla palustris (Zantedeschia aethiopica)|
|Castor bean||Ricinus communis|
|Delphinium (larkspur)||Delphinium spp.|
|Four o’clock||Mirabills jalapa|
|Gloriosa lily||Glonosa superba|
|Lily of the valley||Convallaria majalis|
|Lobelia (cardinal flower, Indian tobacco)||Lobelia spp.|
|Morning glory||Ipomoea violacea|
|Rock poppy (celandyne)||Chelidonium majus|
|Spring adonis||Adonis vernalis|
|Star of Bethlehem||Ornithogalum umbellatum|
|Sweet pea||Lathyrus spp.|
|Trumpet flower (chalice vine)||Solandra spp.|
Edible Flowers Are A Good Way to Go With the Use of Common Sense
I will repeat here is the link to my article which has a chart of edibles and two edible flower recipes.
Now here are some things you can do with flowers: You can scatter some flowers in your salads to add some dash, taste and color. They can be frozen into rings of ice, or even put them in cubes to add colorful beauty to beverages or punches.
You can also use flowers in a candied or what is referred as “crystallized flowers” to decorate cakes and candies. I am not going to go into the how to in crystalizing flowers, but you can go to this recipe page on Food Network for info on how to actually do it.
Here’s a video on making an edible flower salad.