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Centaurea cyanus

Centaurea cyanus is also known as Cornflower or Bachelor’s Buttons. In fact, it has a long list of names I will include at the end of this page. This is the national flower of Estonia. It is also a symbol in Germany and Austria. It is used as a symbol by political parties in Finland, Sweden, and Estonia.

Centaurea cyanus belongs to the Asteraceae family of plants. It is an upright annual that flowers in spring and summer. It is native to Europe.

Centaurea cyanus, Cornflower
Centaurea cyanus or Batchelor’s Button

Originally Centaurea cyanus or Cornflower was treated as a weed. Since it grows around cornfields, therefore, the reason for the common name Cornflower. However, now it is mostly grown as an ornamental flower and disappearing from its natural habitat.

Centaurea cyanus
Centaurea cyanus, Cornflower

Centaurea cyanus or Cornflower grows from 40 to 90cm or 1.2 to 3ft. It has grayish-green stems. It has lanceolate foliage. The flowers are probably one of the bluest I have seen. It is a beautiful shade of violet-blue. Through cultivation, there are other Cornflower colors such as pink, white, purple, or very dark maroon.

The flowers are edible. They use Centaurea cyanus as decoration on cakes or salads. They also brew it as tea.

How to grow Centaurea cyanus:

Grow Centaurea cyanus in the sun. Plant it in well-drained soil. It is usually pest-free. Watch out for powdery mildew. Deadhead the flowers to prolong flowering. Propagate by seed. Centaurea cyanus seeds germinate fast.

Centaurea cyanus, Corflower
Centaurea cyanus or Cornflower or Batchelor’s Button

As to the common name Bachelor’s Button is due to stories that men in love used to wear the flower and if it faded very quickly it meant the love would not be returned and is short-lived. There is also a story that Beautiful Queen Louise of Prussia while fleeing Napoleon’s forces, hid her children in a Cornflower field and therefore it became a national symbol in Germany.

Centaurea cyanus, Batchelor's Button
Centaurea cyanus, Batchelor’s Button, or Cornflower

Centaurea cyanus is known by many common names such as you can see in the list below:

Barbeau 
Blaver 
Blawort 
Bluebonnets 
Bluebottle 
Blue bow 
Blue poppy 
Blue sailors 
Blue tops 
Bluets 
Break-your-spectacles 
Brushes 
Born Binks 
Bornbottle 
Corn Centaury 
French Pink 
Happy Skies 
Haw Dods 
Hurtsickle 
Ragged Robin 
Ragged Sailor 
Witches’ Bells

About Online Flower Garden & Dino

I am a flower enthusiast and a gardener at heart. Ever since childhood I loved reading about plants and started gardening at an early age. First by helping my father in the garden and later managing a large garden myself in my teen years. I planted and cared for a large number of plants, flowers, and trees both outdoors and in a greenhouse. To this day I enjoy visiting gardens and parks and learning about new and old specimens and varieties of plants.

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