My american friend

or Centaurea americana 'Aloha Blanca'
I grow a lot of my plants from seed and quite a few of these are annuals.  I grow the usual suspects like Cosmos, cornflowers, nasturtians and cerinthe.  I know if I sow these they will grow and I will be happy with the results.  Every year I usually buy a couple of new plants to me as well.  This year I sowed this, the 'Basket Flower'.  Yes it is a form of cornflower, so on that scale not exactly a wild exotic adventure for me, but all the same I was interested to see how it would develop.
It germinated quite easily and to be honest was not that exciting at its early stages.  I only really got interested when the buds started to form.  Not actually sure why it is called the Basket Flower, did wonder if this stage was sort of basket looking, maybe.....?
It went through a delightfully tufty stage (the older generation out there will now be thinking about squirrels,  the rest of you just google it, carefully!).
Suddenly after being in the bud stage for several days it really began to open.
and then there it was.  It apparently can grow to 4-5ft tall.  I will let you know about that one, it is about 18inches tall at the moment. 

I bought mine from Chiltern Seeds and they are a hardy annual.  Certainly so far they seem good value and I live in hope of great height from them, though I wonder if the drought will have hampered them.  I will certainly grow them again next year.


  1. Hi there. When did you sow your basket flowers? I love the choice on the Chiltern site but their growing instructions for numpty's like me are poor! I was going to treat them like normal annual cornflowers...

    1. I sowed them around about this time of year, I treated them like cornflowers too. I didn't get loads germinating but I got some. Good luck!


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