Create Your Garden

Centaurea americana (Basket Flower)

American Basket-flower, American Star-thistle, Basket-flower, Star Thistle, Shaving Brush, Basket Flower

Centaurea americana, American Basket-flower, American Star-thistle, Basket-flower, Star Thistle, Shaving Brush, Basket Flower
Centaurea americana, American Basket-flower, American Star-thistle, Basket-flower, Star Thistle, Shaving Brush, Basket Flower

Rich with a sweet, honey fragrance, Centaurea americana (Basket Flower) is a magnificent annual boasting very large flowers, 4-5 in. across (10-12 cm), with pinkish lavender ray flowers surrounding creamy disc flowers. Blooming profusely in late spring to late summer, the blossoms open from architectural, egg-shaped flower buds covered with a woven-looking pattern of bristled scales. They rise cheerfully atop tall stout stems clothed with lance-shaped leaves and are visited by butterflies and other pollinators. The flowers are followed by fluffy seed heads and songbirds feast on them as soon as they are ripe. An easily cultivated wildflower, Basket Flower is perfect for the back of flower borders or meadow plantings. Excellent for cutting and drying too.

  • Grows up to 24-48 in. tall (60-120 cm) and 24-30 in. wide (60-75 cm). May self-seed in the garden.
  • Performs best in full sun in slightly acidic to neutral, dry to medium moisture, well-drained soils. Drought tolerant once established.
  • Perfect for beds and borders, cottage gardens, prairies and meadows, and wildlife gardens. Excellent choice for naturalizing. Great as cut flowers too, fresh or in dried arrangements.
  • Easy to grow and virtually pest and disease free. Provide good air circulation to keep the foliage healthy.
  • New plants may be grown each year by planting seed indoors 6-8 weeks before the last spring frost date or outdoors at the last spring frost date.
  • Native to the United States.

Requirements

Hardiness 2 - 11
Climate Zones 1, 1A, 1B, 2, 2A, 2B, 3, 3A, 3B, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, H1, H2
Plant Type Annuals
Plant Family Compositae
Genus Centaurea
Common names Basket-flower, Shaving Brush, Star Thistle
Exposure Full Sun
Season of Interest Spring (Late)
Summer (Early, Mid, Late)
Height 2' - 4'
(60cm - 120cm)
Spread 2' - 3'
(60cm - 90cm)
Spacing 24" - 30"
(60cm - 80cm)
Maintenance Low
Water Needs Low
Soil Type Clay, Loam, Sand
Soil pH Acid, Neutral
Soil Drainage Well-Drained
Characteristics Dried Arrangements, Cut Flowers, Fragrant, Showy
Native Plants United States, Rhode Island, New York, Northeast, Southwest, Southeast, Midwest, Kansas, Missouri, Iowa, Illinois, Wisconsin, South Carolina, Arkansas, Texas, Arizona, New Mexico, Oklahoma
Tolerance Drought, Dry Soil
Attracts Bees, Butterflies
Garden Uses Beds And Borders
Garden Styles Informal and Cottage, Prairie and Meadow
How Many Plants
Do I Need?
Explore Great Plant Combination Ideas
Centaurea
Guides with
Centaurea
Not sure which Centaurea to pick?
Compare Now

Alternative Plants to Consider

Centaurea cyanus ‘Jubilee Gem’ (Cornflower)
Centaurea dealbata (Persian Cornflower)
Centaurea dealbata ‘John Coutts’ (Persian Cornflower)
Centaurea cyanus ‘Black Gem’ (Cornflower)
Centaurea cyanus ‘Pinkie’ (Cornflower)
Centaurea cyanus ‘Snowman’ (Cornflower)

Recommended Companion Plants

Echinacea purpurea (Purple Coneflower)
Agastache foeniculum (Anise Hyssop)
Coreopsis (Tickseed)

Find In One of Our Guides or Gardens

Stunning Blue Flowers to Enhance Your Garden’s Beauty
Best Annual Flowers and Plants to Spruce up Your Garden
Companion Planting With Annuals
Native Plant Alternatives to Centaurea cyanus (Cornflower)
While every effort has been made to describe these plants accurately, please keep in mind that height, bloom time, and color may differ in various climates. The description of these plants has been written based on numerous outside resources.
Buy Plants

Requirements

Hardiness 2 - 11
Climate Zones 1, 1A, 1B, 2, 2A, 2B, 3, 3A, 3B, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, H1, H2
Plant Type Annuals
Plant Family Compositae
Genus Centaurea
Common names Basket-flower, Shaving Brush, Star Thistle
Exposure Full Sun
Season of Interest Spring (Late)
Summer (Early, Mid, Late)
Height 2' - 4'
(60cm - 120cm)
Spread 2' - 3'
(60cm - 90cm)
Spacing 24" - 30"
(60cm - 80cm)
Maintenance Low
Water Needs Low
Soil Type Clay, Loam, Sand
Soil pH Acid, Neutral
Soil Drainage Well-Drained
Characteristics Dried Arrangements, Cut Flowers, Fragrant, Showy
Native Plants United States, Rhode Island, New York, Northeast, Southwest, Southeast, Midwest, Kansas, Missouri, Iowa, Illinois, Wisconsin, South Carolina, Arkansas, Texas, Arizona, New Mexico, Oklahoma
Tolerance Drought, Dry Soil
Attracts Bees, Butterflies
Garden Uses Beds And Borders
Garden Styles Informal and Cottage, Prairie and Meadow
How Many Plants
Do I Need?
Explore Great Plant Combination Ideas
Centaurea
Guides with
Centaurea
Not sure which Centaurea to pick?
Compare Now

Gardening Ideas

Plant Calculator

How many Centaurea americana (Basket Flower) do I need for my garden?

Input your garden space dimensions

Your Shopping List

Plant Quantity
Centaurea americana (Basket Flower) N/A Buy Plants

Please Login to Proceed

You Have Reached The Free Limit, Please Subscribe to Proceed

Subscribe to Gardenia

To create additional collections, you must be a paid member of Gardenia
  • Add as many plants as you wish
  • Create and save up to 25 garden collections
Become a Member

Plant Added Successfully

You have Reached Your Limit

To add more plants, you must be a paid member of our site Become a Member

Update Your Credit
Card Information

Cancel

Create a New Collection

Sign Up to Our Newsletter

    You have been subscribed successfully

    Join Gardenia.net

    Create a membership account to save your garden designs and to view them on any device.

    Becoming a contributing member of Gardenia is easy and can be done in just a few minutes. If you provide us with your name, email address and the payment of a modest $25 annual membership fee, you will become a full member, enabling you to design and save up to 25 of your garden design ideas.

    Join now and start creating your dream garden!

    Join Gardenia.net

    Create a membership account to save your garden designs and to view them on any device.

    Becoming a contributing member of Gardenia is easy and can be done in just a few minutes. If you provide us with your name, email address and the payment of a modest $25 annual membership fee, you will become a full member, enabling you to design and save up to 25 of your garden design ideas.

    Join now and start creating your dream garden!

    Find your Hardiness Zone

    Find your Heat Zone

    Find your Climate Zone