These flowers make visiting so inviting, how can a pollinator insect possibly resist?They look like Frank Gehry's notion of a faerie dance hall.
Even before they open, there are intimations of something spectacular; the only down side to these flowers is that you can't eat them. You can, however, eat primroses, lavender, red poppies, roses, daylilies, marigold, nasturtium, violets, pansies, lilac, elderflowers, borage, and a whole host of flowers from common herbs, like sage, mint, and perhaps most commonly, chive. Only requirement: ensuring the blossoms you choose haven't been exposed to pesticides or other things you wouldn't want in your body. (The now week-old chicks can confirm the edibility of flowers...)
For roses and other larger flowers, remember to remove the bitter white bit at the base of the petal. Don't expect too much taste from flowers, they're mostly there for color and charm. The herbal flowers usually taste a like more delicate version of the herb's leaves, with the exception of chive flowers, which are so powerful whole that they can taste like a raw onion. I learned this the hard way. Each chive blossom needs to be separated into lots of little flowerlets before being sprinkled into an omelet for delicious effect (none of the chives made it past the winter freeze, so I have no photos to share). I add a sprig of lavender to my lemonade, and it makes its way into a host of desserts, like ice cream. Violets and lilac are lovely atop cakes when sugared (and they keep for a good while, too.) Lilacs are another one of the flowers that does have a lot of flavor.
In the photo above, a salad is simply dressed with balsamic vinegar and olive oil in the bowl given to me by my favorite butcher, a Moroccan, when I left Amsterdam. Scattered across the greens is an overly generous amount of blue borage, pale purple sage, red poppy, one purple sweet pea and a bit of yellow zinnia. I would have added primroses from the field, but it was getting late...and it was time to eat.