Gardening 101: Corn Cockle – Gardenista

Corn Cockle, Agrostemma githago

Searching for an underused however extremely charming cottage flower? Agrostemma might be it. I’ve just lately began including this cutie to each my purchasers’ reducing gardens and rambunctious planting beds. One take a look at the playful petals, one encounter watching the flower-filled stems bop backwards and forwards in just a breeze, and one sighting of them tucked right into a unfastened flower association—and you’ll immediately need this bloom in your backyard.

Please preserve studying to be taught extra about this old school flower:

Above: Agrostemma ‘Purple Queen’ affords a shimmering purple hue with a white ombre heart and black radiating traces. {Photograph} by Kendra Wilson.

Tremendous simple to develop, Agrostemma is a half hardy annual that deserves a comeback. Its botanical title is derived from agros (area, countryside) and stemma (garland, wreath), hinting at its usefulness in beautifying objects. Native to Europe, this florific plant, also referred to as corn cockle, thrives in cool climate and due to this fact actually shines in early summer season, earlier than rising temperatures sluggish it down; should you reside in a gentle local weather, it’ll proceed to bloom all the best way to September. Willowy, silvery-green stems stand comparatively upright and attain about 36 inches tall and 18 inches large.

A 4-inch pot of pink Agrostemma ‘Milas’ is $7.95 at Annie’s Annuals.
Above: A 4-inch pot of pink Agrostemma ‘Milas’ is $7.95 at Annie’s Annuals.

This plant is quick and straightforward to develop from seed, and you are able to do this by sowing seeds outside within the very early spring for a late spring bloomfest, or fall or winter in hotter climates (Zones 8 and above). For those who discover nursery grown crops (I like to purchase them in 4 inch pots), add compost to the soil when planting. As soon as your Agrostemma begins its present, lower your flowers for preparations when the flutes are half opened. And deadhead when spent blooms arrive to increase the flowering season. Towards the top of the season, go away some  flowers to set seed so you will get some self-sown sweeties for subsequent yr. Professional tip: Plant a number of in a cluster for a mass impact, or wind and weave some by a planting mattress for a unfastened and ethereal really feel.

Cheat Sheet

Above: Agrostemma ‘Ocean Pearls’ proudly shows elegant white flowers and black radiating traces. {Photograph} by Kendra Wilson, from Cottesbrooke Gardeners’ Honest.
  • Good in a reducing, cottage, or Victorian backyard, and even winding by a meadow.
  • Provides a romantic, carefree really feel.
  • Nice companion crops are: Calendula, Centaurea, Peony, and Iris.
  • Attracts bees and different crucial pollinators.
  • All elements of this plant, together with the seeds, are toxic so watch out round youngsters and pets.
  • Naturally deer-resistant.

Preserve It Alive

Photograph by Mibby23 via Flickr.
Above: {Photograph} by Mibby23 by way of Flickr.

  • Full solar is greatest.
  • Plant in common to wealthy soil that drains properly.
  • Medium quantities of water are excellent to maintain it comfortable, however it will possibly additionally tolerate some drought.
  • Surprisingly no fertilizer is required and no pests will hassle it.
  • Might have assist on the base if too floppy in your style. In any other case recognize its relaxed look.

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