Improvement status: Landrace
Seeds per packet: ~400
Germination tested 11/2021: 73%
Life cycle: Annual or short-lived perennial
One of the very best all-purpose insectary plants to attract and support beneficial insects. Sweet Alyssum provides a long-term seasonal source of nectar for lacewings, hoverflies (syrphid flies), mason bees, tachinid flies, and parasitic wasps. Sweet Alyssum is a low growing groundcover that is fast to blossom and grows well in a variety of settings like flower baskets, walkways, window boxes, and as a companion plant among your vegetables. Plants unfurl cascades of tiny white snowflake blossoms with a light honey scent.
While the whole plant is technically edible, like most members of the cabbage family (Brassicaceae), and some people do consume the flowers as a garnish in salad, it is typically only grown as an ornamental. A perennial in warm areas (USDA Zone 9 or higher), however it is mainly grown as an annual. Reaches heights of about 12” and is easy to tuck into empty patches of soil.
Our seed comes from Chris Homanics of Head, Hands, Heart Nursery and Seed in Washington state.
GROWING TIPS: Start indoors 4-5 weeks before your last frost. Harden off and transplant after danger of frost has passed. Surface sow several seeds per cell, gently press seeds into soil. Keep moist until germination, which should be about 2 weeks. Can also be direct sown later in summer.
Special thanks to May for the photo: https://pixabay.com/users/may_hokkaido-11960248/https://pixabay.com/users/may_hokkaido-11960248/