Cornflower: A Bit of Botany
a little botanical information on cornflower

Cornflower is an annual flowering plant in the family Asteraceae, growing to 16-35 inches tall, with grey-green branched stems. The leaves are lanceolate, 1–4 cm long. The flowers are most commonly an intense blue color, produced in flowerheads (capitula) 1.5–3 cm diameter, with a ring of a few large, spreading ray florets surrounding a central cluster of disc florets. The blue pigment is protocyanin, which in roses is red. It flowers from June until August.

common names & nomenclature
The plant is called cornflower because it naturally occurs near field crops, namely corn. The plant is also known as Bachelor's Button and Boutonniere Flower because young men once wore the flower in the label of their jacket to draw attention to their eligibility status. Its Latin name, Cyanus, comes from mythology for a youthful devotee of the goddess Flora (Cyanus), whose favorite flower it was. The name of the genus is derived from the Centaur, Chiron, who taught humankind the healing virtue of herbs

Also known as:
basket flower, cornflower, bachelor's button, bluebottle, boutonniere flower, hurtsickle, cyani flower

Cornflower, the bright blue flower for color
Cornflower: Where in the World
habitat and range for cornflower

Cornflower is native to Europe and is naturalized in other parts of the world, including North America and Australia.

Cornflower: Cultivation & Harvesting
considerations for growing and harvesting cornflower

Cornflower prefers full sun and mature plants can be drought tolerant. Will grow as a weed in and around crops, roadsides, river banks, meadows and more.

Cornflower prefers a well-drained fertile soil, but tolerates dry, low fertility and alkaline soils.

Sow cornflower seeds in March in the greenhouse. When they are large enough to handle, transplant the seedlings out into individual pots and plant them out in May. The seed can also be sown directly in garden beds during April, in areas where the winters are not too cold a direct sowing during September will produce larger and earlier-flowering plants.

Harvest the petals anytime during the blooming season. Dry them by hanging the flower stalks upside down or lay flat on screens.

Store dried cornflower petals in an airtight container in a cool, dry place.