Bachelor's button (Centaurea cyanus) is a small flowering annual and member of the Aster family. Native to Europe, it has naturalized in North America. The flowers were originally only found in blue but are now available in many shades of white, pink, purple and red.
The bachelor's button prefers full sun and is extremely drought tolerant.
Another name for bachelor's button is cornflower, since it often grew as a weed in fields of crops. "Light Cornflower Blue" is a Crayola crayon name.
In folklore, the bachelor's button was worn as a young man's boutonniere. If it faded quickly, it indicated that the young man did not return his sweetheart's love.
Bachelor's button is used as an ingredient in some teas, including the Twinings "Lady Grey" blend.
Bachelor's buttons are often used in dried flower arrangements, since the blooms retain their bright colors even after drying.
- Texas AgriLife Extension Service, Texas A&M System
bachelor's button flower, cornflower, centaurea cyanus
About this Author
Gwen Bruno has been a full-time freelance writer since 2009, with her gardening-related articles appearing on DavesGarden. She is a former teacher and librarian, and she holds a bachelor's degree in education from Augustana College and master's degrees in education and library science from North Park University and the University of Wisconsin.