Gardens Illustrated

Remember to sow your Chinese forget-me-not

Published: May 3, 2019 at 3:12 pm

UK readers will have received a packet of Cynoglossum amabile with their May issue of the magazine. Why not sow them this weekend?

Cynoglossum amabile, or Chinese forget-me-not is an upright, bushy annual, producing a multitude of little blue flowers from mid to late summer. It grows best in less fertile soil and is idea for sunny mixed borders.


Horticulturist Jamie Butterworth happened to pick the plant out back in our January issue as one of his favourite choices for 2019.

"Once seen Chinese forget-me-not is a plant you will remember. Delightful blue flowers add a zing to planting through summer. Could this be the next star of Chelsea? Ideal as a cut flower, or as an annual to spice up border. I like to mix it with a fiery geum for a dazzling display," Jamie wrote.

Cynoglossum c Vicki Turner

Here's how to plant your seeds
Indoors February to April: Sow thinly, cover with 5mm of compost. Firm gently and keep moist. Cover with glass, polythene or propagator lid and keep at 15-20°C. Seedlings appear in 14-28 days. Remove cover and when large enough to handle, transplant 5cm apart in trays. Harden off by standing outside for a few days from late May (avoid frosts). Transplant 25cm apart in flowering position.

Outdoors April to May: Sow thinly in rows 20cm apart. Cover with 5mm of fine soil. Firm gently and keep moist. Thin to 25cm apart.

Flowers June to October. Deadhead to prolong flowering and stop sticky seeds from becoming a nuisance.
Height 45cm Spread 30cm.


• Illustration by Vicki Turner


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