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12 Interesting Facts About Nasturtium

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Nasturtium is a plant species that belongs to the family Brassicaceae. It is native to South America, specifically in countries like Peru and Bolivia. The genus includes around 80 species which are known for their vibrant flowers, pungent aroma, and edible leaves. In this article, we will explore some fascinating facts about Nasturtium that you may not have known before.

1. Edibility: Did you know that all parts of the plant are edible? The leaves, flowers, seeds, and even the sprouts can be consumed in salads or cooked dishes. Not only do they add a peppery taste to your meal, but they also serve as an excellent source of vitamins A and C!

2. Ornamental Value: The brightly colored flowers of Nasturtium make them popular ornamental plants. They come in various shades such as red, yellow, orange, and even bi-colored varieties. These plants do not require much maintenance and grow well in containers too.

3. Insect Repellent: One interesting fact about Nasturtium is that they attract beneficial insects like ladybugs and hoverflies which help control aphids and other pests on your garden plants. This makes them natural pest controllers!

4. Medicinal Uses: Historically, Nasturtium has been used for medicinal purposes due to its anti-inflammatory properties. The seeds contain an alkaloid called “mustard oil” that could be useful in treating respiratory issues like coughs and colds.

5. Culinary Uses: Apart from being edible, Nasturtium is also known for its culinary uses. The peppery leaves can be used as a garnish or added to salads, soups, and sandwiches. Even the flowers can be used in salad dressings or as decorative elements on cakes and tarts.

6. Soil Improvement: Due to their deep roots, Nasturtiums help improve soil quality by breaking up compacted soil and releasing nutrients into it. This makes them a great companion plant for other plants in your garden!

7. Drought Tolerance: Another fascinating fact about Nasturtium is its ability to thrive under drought conditions. They can survive with minimal watering, making them perfect for areas with limited irrigation.

8. Bee Attractor: The brightly colored flowers of Nasturtium are also attractive to bees. By planting these in your garden, you can help support pollination and the overall health of your local ecosystem.

9. Pest Resistance: Unlike many other plants, Nasturtiums resist common pests like aphids, slugs, and snails. This makes them a great choice for gardeners looking to reduce their reliance on chemical pesticides.

10. Seed Savings: If you save the seeds from your Nasturtium plants, you’ll be able to grow more of these beautiful and versatile plants the following year. Just remember to collect the seeds before the frost hits!

11. Disease Resistance: Unlike some other brassica family members, Nasturtiums are relatively disease-resistant. They aren’t prone to common issues like powdery mildew or downy mildew, making them an easy-to-grow addition to your garden.

12. Climbing Varieties: While most people think of Nasturtium as a ground cover plant, there are climbing varieties available too. These can be trained up trellises, fences, or other structures for added visual interest in your landscape design.

In conclusion, Nasturtium is more than just a pretty face. Its various uses in culinary, medicinal, and ecological fields make it an essential plant species to incorporate into your garden. So go ahead, plant some Nasturtium seeds today and enjoy the beauty and benefits they have to offer!

Please note that this article is for informational purposes only and should not be used as professional medical advice.

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