Saturday, June 15, 2013

Reseeding Flowers - Why Did I Do That?

Years ago, when I decided to garden with native and perennial flowers, my sister, Sissy, said I needed some Queen Anne's Lace (QAL) since it grew so abundantly along the roads here in the piney woods of east Texas. And, hubby's grandmother had said "you always need something white in your garden." So my fate was sealed.
Queen Anne's Lace (Daucus carota L. )

Running the back roads out here one summer day, Sissy said, "pull over and I am going to get you some seeds." Well, maybe it was more like me saying, "get out and get me some seeds." 

Anyway I ended up with a treasure trove of QAL seeds to plant and I did. And, they came up, looked glorious that first year and re-seeded. I need not go on. . . .

My good friend, herbalist Lee Ann, convinced me to dry the QAL flowers and use them as snowflakes on the Christmas tree. 

I found this easiest to do by snipping off the stem really, really close to the flower. Then press the flowers in a heavy book or flower press, by laying the flowers between two pieces of paper towel. Press the flowers for a week or until completely flat.  

When dry, place flattened flower heads on newspaper and lightly spray with hairspray and air dry (here is a chance to get rid of that hair spray that gives you a bad hair day). 

Store the flowers, flat, in a plastic bag until you are ready to use your 'snowflake.' You can spray these with fake snow, glitter or just leave them natural. There are a myriad of ways to use creations. I think next year I will try to use them for Mother's day.

But I have more QAL blooms than decorations I want to make. So doing the research, I found a recipe for Queen Anne's Lace Jelly at but it said,  "WARNING - Please do not attempt to use this recipe if you cannot positively identify and distinguish Queen Anne's Lace from poison Hemlock, as Hemlock is extremely poisonous and looks very similar."

So, I have decided it is in everybody's best interest NOT to make this jelly. If you do, let me know how it comes out.

Click on this link if you want to know the The Difference between Queen Anne's Lace and Poison Hemlock

I love the ethereal look of these flowers and because their height is about 2-3' they make a wonderful backdrop in the garden. Downside - they reseed. Upside - you can make decorations from the blooms. Upside - you can make jelly from the blooms. Downside - you could die.


  1. Very interesting! I think I'll just enjoy QAL visually, and not try my hand at jelly, either. Love your ornament ideas!

  2. You are so talented!
    And smart....
    Who would have thought that there were so many uses for this roadside "weed".

  3. How beautiful! Are they blooming now? I loved your article, especially Hubby's Grandmother. Grandmother's always knew best as I was told the same, I was advised that the white flowers were most beautiful at night...she was right and I enjoyed photographing them at night with time lapse on the old slr. Memories!

  4. Hmmm....I thought I left a comment, but it isn't showing up. So, if this is a duplicate, I apologize. Ann, I wanted to tell you that I enjoyed the bit about the Queen Anne's Lace. I also wanted to tell you that I have a Mimosa tree in my yard, that was started from a seed from the largest Mimosa tree in the state of OK. My sister and her husband was traveling around to some of the small towns in Western OK a number of years ago, and happened upon this tree, with a plaque proclaiming it as the largest in the state. She picked up some seeds, and brought them home and planted them. My tree was one of those seedlings. It has quite a few blooms on it this year, and I will be glad to share, if you would like to have some of the seeds. And, anyone else for that matter.

  5. I love QAL? I first learned about it when my son was doing a project on wildflowers in elementary school. We had to drive up and down streets and even freeways looking for a large variety of flowers. QAL was one of my favorites. Tell Reese I love her Curly hair - free spirited!

  6. I love all you stories! This one about Queen Ann's Lace is so fun and interesting. Love the "Lace" ornaments! Eva

  7. haha - Loved your "upside and downside" summary. I have never seen QAL used as snowflakes, but they are just gorgeous! There is some QAL growing on the side of the road here - I may have to stop and try to get some seeds!

  8. I commented on Wayne's post but should have put most of my comments here. Oh well. I do love your blog and all the great ideas from a true Master Gardener! Thank you Ann!