Updated: Sep 7
What are self sowing flowers and the benefits of having them in your garden? Flowers produce seeds if they are left on the plant without harvesting. The flowers will wilt and over a period of time, the flower head will either turn into a seedpod with seeds inside (ex. Nigella) or the seeds will form on the stem where the head used to be. (ex. Forget Me Not) When the seeds are dropped onto the ground naturally by wind/wildlife or manually, they will over winter and germinate when the weather warms up in the Spring/ Summer. The great thing about them is that they do not require darkness (soil covered) to germinate and will sprout when there's sunlight and in the right temperate range. This is much easier and quicker to start seeds than using seed trays.
One of my top favorites are Nigella flowers to grow in the garden. I love the daintiness of the blooms for design work and the seed pods are great as dried to use as well. The seeds drop very easily from the seed pods and I can easily spot them on the ground. However, if the seeds germinate too closely, the plant's growth will hinder if the seedlings are not thinned out. Stems will grow a lot shorter and blooms will be smaller as well.
Now on to the cons! Plants like Foxgloves produce a lot of seeds, and tons can fall off with just a gentle touch. They can become invasive and spread to other areas of the garden by nature. This can be a major problem if you no longer want the flowers in your garden. However, there are simple solutions- harvest the flowers before seeds are formed and remove any seedlings before they start flowering. Heavy mulching helps too before the growing season.