Cosmos are easy-care annuals that bloom in a wide range of colors. These low-maintenance plants with their rapid growth and showy blooms are sure to be a delightful addition to any garden.
Cosmos have fern-like foliage with pretty, saucer-shaped flowers that dance merrily atop long stems. They provide continuous color from midsummer to fall.
Depending on the variety, cosmos are available in shades of white, pink, rose, crimson, yellow or orange. The blooms can be single, double, crested or frilled. Height varies from 2 to 8 feet. Taller varieties may need staking, especially in open, windy areas.
Natives of Mexico, cosmos love heat. Place where plants will receive 8 to 10 hours of direct sunlight, sheltered from wind. Cosmos are not fussy about soil. In fact, soil that is too rich will result in lush foliage but fewer flowers.
Cosmos are hardy plants and relatively resistant to insect and disease damage. Though drought-resistant, they do appreciate a good soaking during prolonged dry spells.
The long stems of cosmos make them an excellent cutting flower. Cut early in the day, and choose blooms that have not fully opened. They are lovely on their own or combined with other summer flowers, such as snapdragons and zinnias.
- Sunset Western Garden Book; Kathleen Norris Brenzel, Editor; 2007
- AHS Garden Plants and Flowers; Ian Spence; 2004
cosmos, annual, flowers
About this Author
Deborah Hall is a freelance writer from Portland, Oregon. She has written for numerous publications on a variety of topics, including educational trends and sustainable gardening practices. She graduated from the University of Missouri with a bachelor's degree in English.