Behold, the Bachelor’s Button…(aka Cornflower)

One of my favorite garden plants this season has been the Bachelor’s Buttons – aka Cornflowers.

I used to read novels (usually romance novels) in which characters were described as having “cornflower blue eyes”. I never knew what that meant until I started gardening and put two and two together. Now, looking at the gorgeous blue of these flowers (the bluest flowers in the plant kingdom, I’ve read), I have to say that I think that’s a bit of an exaggeration. Have you ever met anyone with eyes this blue? Maybe Elizabeth Taylor…. Of course, I never met her, but you know what I’m saying?

Anyway, “cornflower blue eyes” discussion aside, these are really very pretty flowers. And, they are incredibly easy to grow. All of the Cornflower plants in my garden this year are self-sown…remnants of plants that grew from seeds I planted two springs ago. They just popped up in unplanned abundance, and I’m so glad.

And, not just me – the wildlife is glad, too.

First, the butterflies.

I believe this is a Silver Spotted Skipper. (We have so many skippers here in Massachusetts, it can get confusing.)

Bees also like these flowers…

…as do Syrphid Flies (aka Flower Flies).

I’m hoping the Syrphid Flies will stop off at the Milkweed nearby and do away with some of the aphids camped out there. Wouldn’t that be nice of them?

Occasional, I’ll spot an ant or two, as well.

My favorite visitors to the Bachelor’s Buttons, though, are the Goldfinches. They’re huge fans of the flower’s seeds, so I’ve resisted deadheading even though the plants are looking worse for the wear at this point in the growing season.

It’s worth having a few shabby-looking plants, though, to see pairs of Goldfinches perched in the flower beds, breakfasting on Cornflower seeds.

From the dining room table, pleased that we finally received rain this afternoon – the garden was getting a bit parched,

Mrs. Smythe

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