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  • Grows from 0.3 to 1 meters

  • Native to Southern Europe

  • Introduced in wildflower mixes

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Bachelor's buttons
(Centaurea cyanus)

Quick Identification

  • Purple-blue flowers though there are also plants with flowers purple, pink, red, or white in colour

  • Branching stem with fine hairs

  • narrow leaves which can be lobed or toothed at the base

Outcompetes species in meadows and grassland habitat, reducing water and nutrients available to native species.

Repeated hand pulling can be effective if the root system is removed.  Mowing before flowering can help to reduce seed production.  Collecting seed before maturity will prevent the spread of the plant as it is an annual and relies on reseeding for future growth.

Flowers are commonly blue but can also be purple, pink, white and red in colour.  Petals form a ragged fringe around a darker center.  They bloom mid-spring.

Leaves & Stems
Leaves are grey-green in colour, about 1 cm wide and 13 cm long, and those lower on the plan are lobed or toothed.  Stems are erect and branching.


Preferred Habitat
Disturbed areas, grasslands, pastures, and roadsides. Prefers sandy and slightly alkaline soils.

Has a large taproot.

Reproduction & Dispersal
Reproduces by seed.  Still present in some wildflower mixes and is often spread by gardeners sharing seeds.  Seed is also spread by wind, water, wildlife, and when soil is moved.

Each flower produces a significant number of seeds which allow it to quickly take over.

Interesting Facts
Also know as cornflowers, bachelor's buttons are actually endangered in there native range.

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