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Cornflower
Asteraceae
Centaurea cyanus


Thunder
Thunder
Type Categories Useful Parts

Herb


Asteraceae Family

Centaurea Genus
Other Names for this Plant

Bachelor's Button, Bluebottle, Knapweed, Basket flower, Boutonniere flower, Hurtsickle


Location

Origin & Range: Native to Europe. Naturalized in many other parts of the world, including North America and parts of Australia

Physical Description
It is an annual plant growing to 40-90 cm tall, with grey-green branched stems. The leaves are lanceolate, 1-4 cm long. The flowers are most commonly an intense blue color, produced in flower heads (capitula) 1.5-3 cm diameter, with a ring of a few large, spreading ray florets surrounding a central cluster of disc florets. The blue pigment is protocyanin, which in roses is red. In the past it often grew as a weed in crop fields. It is now endangered in its native habitat by agricultural intensification, particularly over-use of herbicides, destroying its habitat; in the United Kingdom it has declined from 264 sites to just 3 sites in the last 50 years


Compare Species
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Asteraceae
Asterales
Asterales
Star Order (Daisies)
Euasterids II
Euasterids II
Real Stars Group Two
Asteridae
Asteridae
Class of Stars (Daisies)
Core Eudicots
Core Eudicots
Main, Real, Two First-Leaves (Dicots)
Eudicots
Eudicots
Real, Two First-Leaves (Dicots)
Mesangiospermae
Mesangiospermae
Half Capsule Seed Division
Magnoliophyta
Magnoliophyta
Magnolia Division
Spermatophytes
Spermatophytes
Seed Plants
Euphyllophytina
Real Land Plants
Polysporangiates
Multiple Spore Sub-Kingdom
Stomatophytes
Stomatophytes
Air Pores Sub-Kingdom
Embryophytes
Embryophytes
Multicellular Land Plants
Streptobionta
Streptobionta
Multicellular Plants
Plantae
Plantae
Plants
Eukaryota
Eukaryota
Cells with a Nucleus


General Information

Most centaureas originated in Europe, where they still inhabit fields and waysides today, but a few are native to the Americas. They have been part of gardens for centuries, going back to ancient times
Traditionally it has been used to improve digestion, regulate the gall bladder, liver and kidneys as well as for menstrual disorders and to increase resistance to infections.
Cornflowers are often used as an ingredient in tea and is famous in the Lady Grey blend of Twinings. Though the flower taste is rather bland Cornflowers still make an excellent garnish for salads, entrees, and drinks.

The young shoots are edible. Flowers - raw or cooked. The fresh florets can be used in salads. They are used as a vegetable or a garnish. An edible blue dye is obtained from the flowers, used for coloring sugar and confections
Cornflower, or bachelor's button, is a blue flower that at one time was pulverized to make a blue food coloring for use in pastry making and water color paints. Seldom used any more. The flowers may also be used in salads.
The expressed juice of the petals makes a good blue ink; if expressed and mixed with alum-water, it may be used in water-color drawing. It dyes linen a beautiful blue, but the color is not permanent.Blue colorant for ceramics invented by the Minoans came from the blue flowers of cornflower.
The Blue Cornflower has been the national flower of Estonia since 1968 and symbolizes daily bread to Estonians. The Cornflower is also often seen as an inspiration for the romantic symbol of the Blue Flower. The cornflower is also the symbol for Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis



Cornflower


Comment: Cornflower, Centaurea cyanus

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