Monday, December 28, 2009

Dwarf Cornflower "Jubilee Gem"

Botanical name: Centaurea cyanus 'JubileeGem' (Asteraceae)
Other name: Bachelor Button, Knapweed, Devil's Flower, Campion, Bluebottlem Boutonniere Flower, Hurtsickle

Dwarf Cornflower 'Jubilee Gem' is an annual that reseeds, is native to Europe but has naturalized through North America. This bushy plant produces beautiful vibrant blue flowers that attact butterflies and bees. It grows to about 12-18 inches tall. An easy to grow garden favorite suitable for beds, borders, and container planting and excellent for cutting.

How to grow
Sow in early spring where they are to flower in well cultivated soil. Sow thinly 1/8in deep in drills 30cm (12in) apart. Dwarf Jubilee Gem can also be sown in the late summer/early autumn to produce even better plants for flowering next summer, and final thinning should be left until the spring so that the plants are about 45cm (18in) apart.

Height in inches: 10-18"
USDA Hardiness Zones 3-11
Spread: 18-24"
Germination: 8-12 days, below 70F.
Light: Full sun
Soil: well-drain soil
Blooming period: May through August

Medical Benefit
To use for cuts and scrapes, simply rub the cut end of a Cornflower stem on the affected area. For use as an eyewash, prepare as you would a tea, then soak a washcloth and use as an eye compress. For facial skin eruptions, acne, or other irritations, the leaves and flowers can be used as a steam facial - boil the leaves and flowers, then cover the head with a towel and sit over the steaming container. After 15 minutes or so, rinse the face with cool water, and feel the difference!

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