Friday, May 27, 2016

Bachelor

Centaurea cyanus is also known as cornflower, basketflower, bluebottle, hurtsickcle and more commonly, perhaps, a bachelor button.   It is hard to understand how this was considered a weed that filled the fields and thus got the name cornflower, like a grain.  Then with agriculture growth and herbicides used to control weeds, it became endangered.   It can be found in only 3 sites in England where it used to be in over 250 areas.  Yet again, since it "sneaks" into grain seeds that are sent around the world, it is also known as an invasive weed or naturalized flower in other areas around the world!


In the United States they are popular in "grandma's garden."  The name bachelor button came about as bachelors wore them in their lapels when they were sweet on someone they wanted to date.  The longer the flower lasted, the stronger that the love was true love.  If the flower died fairly soon, than the bachelor had to find another true love.

The flowers are edible and look nice in salads.  They are also used in Lady Gray teas.  When picked, it should be in the early morning while still in bud and they will last longer in the flower arrangements.

My plant came out of a package of "wildflower" seeds that I scattered in a small bed.  I have only two little plants, but I do love that true blue color.  

10 comments:

Jenny Woolf said...

I never knew they are edible. They grow in England, sometimes in cornfields, in fact, mostly so, I think. I didn't know that they were bachelor's buttons, either, although I have often heard the name. thanks for an informative post.

joeh said...

One man's weed is another man's treasure.

Marcie said...

The color is intense. I love these little flowers. I think the patch I planted last year got mowed down by an overenthusiastic gardener (not me!)... so I will need to plant more this year. I love, love, love the color and so do the honeybees!

messymimi said...

They are pretty, and i'm always surprised when i find out a flower is edible.

Red said...

You found lots of interesting information on this plant.

Linda Reeder said...

I love bachelors buttons too. We have created a wild patch where we took out out raspberries. Bachelor's buttons are part of the mix. We'll see what happens as the seedlings grow on.

ellen abbott said...

I wondered why they were called corn flowers. I do love them, had a few plants same as you from a packet of wildflower seeds but they didn't naturalize.

My Journey To Mindfulness said...

love the color
and have sprinkled
some wild flower seeds
not up yet
but want to see
what appears..

Mage said...

I love that color too. Mother lined the back of our long driveway with bachelor buttons, and I would pick them to add to bouquets on the dinner table. Hope you both are having a good holiday.

Midlife Roadtripper said...

I used cornflowers in my bridal bouquet long ago. So very pretty.