Popular in 16th century England, this unusual beauty is making a comeback in ornamental and cut-flower gardens for good reason—it's gorgeous in arrangements and lasts a long time. In the garden, it pairs nicely with bronze and deep-purple or red foliage. The plant is tough, thriving in lean and poor soils, as well as drought conditions and heat. Watch the bees and hummingbirds come calling for its sweet nectar.
• Botanical Name: Cerinthe major
• Family: Boraginaceae
• Native: Mediterranean region
• Hardiness: Perennial in USDA zones 8 and warmer; often grown as an annual
• Plant Dimensions: 16"–32" tall
• Variety Information: 1" brilliant violet flowers surrounded by rich-blue bracts that get deeper in color with cooler nights toward the end of the season.
• Attributes: Attracts Pollinators, Cut Flower, Deer Resistant, Drought Tolerant, Heat Tolerant
• When to Sow Outside: 2 to 4 weeks after your average last frost date. Succession sow after a month for continual bloom.
• When to Start Inside: RECOMMENDED. 4 to 6 weeks before your average last frost date.
• Days to Emerge: 7 – 21 days
• Seed Depth: ¼"
• Seed Spacing: A group of 3 seeds every 12" — 18"
• Thinning: When 3" tall, thin to 1 every 12" — 18"
• Special Instructions: Honeywort is tough, but may look a little tired after transplanting. Don't worry, plants will perk up in a week or two once they have established roots in their new space. Deadheading (cutting spent blooms) promotes another flush of flowers. Honeywort may reseed; remove spent flowers and seed heads if this is not desired. For long-lasting cut flowers, cut in the morning, and don't fret when cuttings appear to wilt; dip the bottom of the stem in boiling water for 10 to 20 seconds and flowers will perk up in a vase of cool to warm water.
• Special Care: Soaking seeds for 12 hours prior to sowing speeds germination.