Black Gem Bachelor’s ButtonCentaurea cyanus (90 days) Ruffled dark maroon, also called Garnet Bachelor’s Button. Dates from Buist’s 1942 catalog. Hard to find. Annual. ③
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Centaurea cyanus Named for the centaurs of Greek mythology. Easy to grow, great for cutflowers and beds. Common name may refer to the tight unopened buds’ resemblance to buttons or to their popularity as boutonnieres. Also known as Cornflower and, formerly, Hurt-Sickle because its wiry stems dulled many a sickle during mowing time.
Culture: Start indoors at 60–65° 2 months before setting out, or direct seed in May in a sunny location. Deadhead for persistent blooms, or make a succession planting in mid-late June if you desire late-summer flowering. Will self-sow. Lasts longer than most flowers after frost. Gained top rating for drought resistance from Garden Centers of Colorado. Cut when flowers are just beginning to open—they’ll open more in the vase and last 6–10 days. 3'. ~210 seeds/g. Cannot ship to Alaska.
All flowers are annuals except where noted. All flowers are open-pollinated except where noted.
Days in parentheses after a variety indicate days to first bloom.