A symbol of love, the flamboyant, rich blue flowers of Catananche caerulea (Cupid's Dart) are pretty additions to the garden and a favorite of flower arrangers. Blooming for weeks, from summer to fall, this attractive perennial features branched sprays of violet-centered, lavender daisy-like flowers, 1-2 in. wide (3-5 cm), surrounded by strawlike, shining bracts. They are followed by attractive papery seedheads that are excellent for dried arrangements. Borne on upright leafless stems, the showy blooms rise above a low clump of narrow gray-green grassy leaves. Add these Cupid's Darts to a sunny spot where you want a bright color splash with no maintenance!
- Grows in upright clumps up to 18-28 in. tall (45-70 cm) and 10-12 in. wide (25-30 cm). Short-lived (especially if grown in heavy soil), this perennial plant will self sow in satisfactory conditions and the volunteer seedlings will provide replacement.
- Prefers full sun and enjoys any well-drained soils.
- Easy to grow and virtually pest free, it is also deer and drought tolerant. May be affected by powdery mildew
- Perfect for borders and beds, cottage gardens. Great as cut flowers too!
- Several cultivars of Cupid's Darts are available, including Catananche caerulea 'Alba', with white flowers; Catananche caerulea 'Major' with lavender-blue petals radiating from royal purple centers.
- Remove spent flower stalks to promote more blooms. Cut back after flowering
- Propagate by seed. Propagate by division in spring or by root cuttings in winter
- Native to southern Europe