Cornflower - Black Ball - Centaurea cyanus
Quarter of a teaspoon (approx 60 seeds) of open pollinated seeds from our gardens for $4.00.
Cornflower- Black Ball - Centaurea cyanus (pincushion. Batchelor buttons)
This dramatic burgundy annual cornflower grows to at least 90cm. The plants have an upright habit with long grey/green leaves and produce tall dark maroon double flowers. It is the perfect plant for cottage gardens, Gothic gardens, wildflower gardens, beds and borders. It is an excellent cut flower or dried flower, holding its colour. Cornflowers attract bees, butterflies and other beneficial insects to the garden.
Just like sweet peas, cornflowers need to be cut constantly for a long flowering period. Harvest the flowers early in the mornning. Cut the flowers just before they open fully – the centre of the flower should still be dipped inwards slightly. Immediately set the stems in a jar of warm water. Later, strip the stems of lower leaves and arrange the flowers in a vase with fresh water. Cornflowers will last up to 7 days.
Sow direct for best results in spring after the last frost or in autumn, barely covering seed, in full sun or part shade. Keep moist through germination and while growing. Prefers a cooler climate but will tolerate summer heat. Plants may need some support.
Culinary note: Centaurea cyanus petals are edible.