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Bachelor Button

Star-shaped annuals look good behind borders, in arrangements and, of course, worn as boutonnieres!

Bachelor Button FlowersAmazing color all summer long! ​Home flower gardeners are growing bachelor buttons (Centaurea cyanus) from seed for their frilly blossoms showing in pale blues, purples, pinks and reds. ​Also known as cornflowers, these jolly plants ​provide a splash of color throughout warm summer months​. Long silvery stems are perfect for cut flower arrangements​ and look great behind borders​.

For a spectacular effect, plant in combination with red poppies and snapdragons, or mix with day lilies in a border.​ ​Self-seeding hardy annual, grows 2-3 feet tall and is perfect for mass plantings. ​Drought-tolerant and attractive to bees and other pollinators.​ ​​Performs well in most zones.

Fun Fact: Discovered in the tomb of King Tutankhamen who died in 1340 B.C. The 1-1/2 inch blossoms were woven into a beautiful wreath and given to the King to aid in the afterlife.


Bachelor's Button

Bachelor Button Seeds

This hardy annual does well in most zones and looks good behind sunny borders.

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Heirloom flowers​ will turn your outdoor space into a profusion of color! Planting instructions are included with each seed packet and shipping is FREE!​

Quick Guide: Planting, Growing & Caring for Bachelor Buttons

  1. Annual that’s easy to plant and care for
  2. Sow seeds outdoors just before or after the last frost
  3. Provide full sun, healthy soil and an average amount of water
  4. Tall plants that benefit from support
  5. Blooms mid-summer when planted around last frost
  6. Long-lasting blooms for flower arrangements

Sunlight: Full sun
Maturity: 80-95 days from seed to flower
Height: 12 to 36 inches
Spacing: Plant 6 to 12 inches apart in all directions

Site Preparation

Bachelor buttons are not particularly fussy and will tolerate most growing conditions providing they receive plenty of sun. They will do well in average, well-drained soils and do not require large amounts of water. Tall plants tend to sprawl without some support and are easily flattened by wind. Give support by allowing them to grow through a peony ring or select a site in a sheltered location.

How to Plant

Bachelor buttons are easy to sow from seed. Sow outdoors just before the last frost or shortly after. Plant seeds just beneath the surface of the soil. Seeds will germinate in 7-14 days. Add a general purpose organic fertilizer once a month and remove the old flowers to prolong the blooming season. If treated right, they’ll self sow — be sure to mulch starting in the fall to offer organic matter and protection to the new seedlings.

Tip: For a spectacular effect, plant in combination with red poppies and snapdragons, or mixed with day lilies in a border.

Insect & Disease Problems

Bachelor Buttons do not have many problems with insects and disease. In wet weather, they can occasionally suffer from powdery mildew and rust. To reduce and prevent common plant diseases:

  • Avoid overhead watering whenever possible (use soaker hoses or drip irrigation)
  • Properly space plants to improve air circulation
  • Apply organic fungicides to prevent further infection

Seed Saving Instructions

Allow flowers to mature and fade on the plant. Seed pods develop at the base of the flower and turn light tan to brown when mature. Remove the pod and allow it to dry for a few days. With your thumb, rub open the end of the pod, and loosened seeds should release freely.

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14 Responses to “Bachelor Button”

  1. Katie LaMantia on April 30th, 2014 at 10:43 am #

    great information thank you

  2. MaggieTessier on March 3rd, 2015 at 7:22 am #

    Thanks for the info. It definitely helped me out!

  3. Trina on March 28th, 2015 at 1:34 pm #

    Thanks for the info! I received a bag of seed at a plant swap and had no idea how to plant them. Lol

  4. Julie Phipps on May 6th, 2015 at 6:05 am #

    Thank you so much for all of the information. I wasn’t sure where to plant these. Because of your information I now know where to plant them.

  5. Thad Davis on June 15th, 2015 at 9:28 pm #

    While very showy, this is an extremely weedy species, same genus as spotted knapweed and others of that ilk!

    • Mel Lyda on October 10th, 2017 at 1:26 am #

      Yes a very nuisance in some agriculture crop fields and the knapweed in flower is a sought after field for honey bees …. so all is not lost!

  6. Lori Rodriguez on July 13th, 2015 at 12:20 pm #

    Thank you so much for all the information you have here. Very helpful!

  7. Michi on July 18th, 2015 at 12:43 pm #

    Beautiful flowers, never knew what they were, but once I saw them I love them!

  8. Brian on July 26th, 2015 at 1:52 pm #

    Don’t forget about the tiniest birds love these flowers, and come to eat everyday. They are so small they don’t even weigh the Buttons down. I’m in Los Angeles, and they come!!!

  9. Valerie on July 7th, 2016 at 7:02 am #

    Our beautiful reseeded bachelor buttons are mostly browning and dying in early July. Is it overwatering? They get plenty of sun. This has happened other years.

  10. Daisy G on July 24th, 2016 at 8:21 pm #

    This was my firsy year growing Bachelor Buttons from seed. I also did Morning Glory’s and Forget Me Nots and Shasta Daisys and my granddaughter pulled the tags out.?
    So I played the guessing game.
    My question is do Bachelor Buttons and Daisys grow in looking the same?
    I can identify The MGs and FMNs.

  11. Keith Dougherty on August 20th, 2017 at 10:50 am #

    I have this in a small pot outside this summer. Can they be brought inside and survive in the winter?

  12. Sam A on March 19th, 2018 at 5:56 pm #

    I need a faster growing flower but great information you should be proud of yourself.

  13. Ian G. on February 27th, 2019 at 4:58 pm #

    Great information on this wonderful website!

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