Annual Overview: Nasturtium



Nasturtium Stats at a Glance

Botanical Name: Tropaeolum majus

Height: 6 inches to 6 feet

Soil Conditions:  Sandy, well-drained

Sun: Full sun/partial shade

Soil pH Conditions:5.5-7.5


Notes: Annual/perennial

Best use: Mixed flower beds, containers, borders.  Repels whitefly and cabbage caterpillars so works well as a companion plant for cucumbers, cabbage, and herbs.

Starting Nasturtium from Seed

There are several reasons why nasturtium should be sown directly into the garden.  First, nasturtium do not tolerate transplantation well and results are often disappointing.  Also, they can be planted early when the soil is still cooler than is tolerated by many other flower seeds.  They grow very quickly making the need to start early unnecessary.


If you do wish to try your hand at starting seedlings indoors, fill individual peat pots with a fertile commercial soil starter and moisten.  Lightly cover the seeds with soil, as they need darkness to germinate. Place in a room with a constant temperature of 70-75°F.  Cover with clear plastic wrap to maintain the soil moisture and temperature.  Keep the soil moist.  When seedlings appear, remove the plastic wrap and move to a sunny location.



When to Start Seeds: 4 weeks before last frost

Time to Germination: 7-10 days

Light/Dark Requirements: Darkness

When to Plant Nasturtium

Transplant seedlings or purchased plants in the garden as soon as the last threat of frost has passed and the soil reaches 65°F.

Soil Temperature: 55-65°F

Where to Plant Nasturtium

Nasturtium do well in full sun.  In areas with hot summers, plant in partial shade.

Prefers sandy soil but will tolerate a variety of soil conditions as long as it is well-drained.

Nasturtium Plant Spacing

8-12 inches.

Nasturtium Care and Maintenance

Nasturtium require regular watering though some species can tolerate drought conditions.

Average Bloom Time: 10 Weeks

Nasturtium Diseases

The most common diseases associated with Nasturtium include aster yellows, clubroot, fasciation, and viruses.

Nasturtium Pests

The most common pests associated with Nasturtium include aphids, foliage feeding caterpillars, leafhoppers, spider mites,  and whiteflies.


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