Alphabetical Plant Listing

Centaurea cyanus (Cornflower)

Cornflower, Witches' Bells, Ragged Robin, Happy Skies, Haw Dods, Hurtsickle, French Pink, Brushes, Bunk, Blue Tops, Bluets, Blawort, Ragged Sailor, Cornbottle, Corn Centaury, Break-Your-Spectacles, Blue Bow, Blue Poppy, Blue Bonnets, Blue Bottle, Barbeau,


Bearing charming and profuse flowers for months, Centaurea cyanus, known as Cornflower or Bachelor's Button, are particularly attractive annual plants with usually double, daisy-like flower heads, 1.5 in. wide (3.5 cm), in shades of blue, pink, lavender, white, and maroon. Blooming abundantly from late spring into late summer (if deadheaded), they rise cheerfully atop tall stems clad with lance-shaped, gray-green leaves. A magnet for butterflies, they are excellent for cutting and drying.

  • Grow in upright clumps up to 12-36 in. tall (30-90 cm) and spread 6-12 in. wide (15-30 cm).
  • Prefer full sun or light shade and enjoy average, medium, well-drained soils. Cornflowers are very adaptable and will grow in the poorest of soils. Plant will tend to flop in too much shade. Staking may be required on taller plants. Minimal watering and no fertilizer are required to keep these annuals going. Established plants can tolerate dry soil, but regular watering will keep the plants healthier.
  • Easy to grow and virtually pest and disease free (watch for aphids and mealybugs), they are also deer and drought tolerant!
  • Perfect for borders and beds, cottage gardens, prairie plantings, cutting gardens, wildlife gardens or containers. The dwarf varieties are nice for rock gardens and the front of borders or along edges. Excellent choice for naturalizing. Great as cut flowers too, fresh or in dried arrangements!
  • Suggested Varieties are Centaurea cyanus 'Blue Boy' with double blue flowers; Centaurea cyanus 'Black Magic' with dark purple blossoms; Centaurea cyanus 'Dwarf Blue Midget' a compact variety with bright, blue flowers on 6-12 in. plants (15-30 cm).
  • 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. In mild winter areas, seed may be planted outdoors in the fall.
  • Plants may reseed in the garden. Deadheading spent flowers will help prevent undesired self-seeding
  • Native to Europe.

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Requirements

Hardiness 2 – 11
Heat Zones 1 – 7
Climate Zones 1, 2, 3, 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 Centaurea - Cornflowers
Exposure Full Sun
Season of Interest Spring (Late)
Summer (Early,Mid,Late)
Height 1' – 3' (30cm – 90cm)
Spread 6" – 1' (15cm – 30cm)
Spacing 6" – 12" (15cm – 30cm)
Water Needs Average
Maintenance Low
Soil Type Loam, Sand
Soil pH Acid, Alkaline, Neutral
Soil Drainage Well-Drained
Characteristics Dried Arrangements, Cut Flowers, Showy
Native Plants United Kingdom
Tolerance Deer, Drought
Attracts Birds, Butterflies
Garden Uses Beds and Borders, Patio and Containers
Garden Styles Coastal Garden, Cutting Garden, Gravel and Rock Garden, Informal and Cottage, Prairie and Meadow

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* Top picture is courtesy of Botanik Foto

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.


Requirements

Hardiness 2 – 11
Heat Zones 1 – 7
Climate Zones 1, 2, 3, 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 Centaurea - Cornflowers
Exposure Full Sun
Season of Interest Spring (Late)
Summer (Early,Mid,Late)
Height 1' – 3' (30cm – 90cm)
Spread 6" – 1' (15cm – 30cm)
Spacing 6" – 12" (15cm – 30cm)
Water Needs Average
Maintenance Low
Soil Type Loam, Sand
Soil pH Acid, Alkaline, Neutral
Soil Drainage Well-Drained
Characteristics Dried Arrangements, Cut Flowers, Showy
Native Plants United Kingdom
Tolerance Deer, Drought
Attracts Birds, Butterflies
Garden Uses Beds and Borders, Patio and Containers
Garden Styles Coastal Garden, Cutting Garden, Gravel and Rock Garden, Informal and Cottage, Prairie and Meadow

Great Plant Combination Ideas with Centaurea - Cornflowers

Guides with Centaurea - Cornflowers

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