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Cosmos Flower: How To Grow And Care For The Cosmos Plant

cosmos flower

The Cosmos flower is an annual flowering plant grown for their showy daisy-like flowers.

Flowers may be bowl shaped or open cup-shaped depending upon the exact plant grown. These flowers are ideal as decorations, used in flower arrangements and if you’re wanting to attract butterflies, hummingbirds, and bees to your garden.

Here are some cosmos varieties you may consider growing in your perennial garden:

Cosmos bipinnatus, also known as Mexican aster or garden cosmos – a herbaceous plant native to Mexico and naturalized across South America, North America, West Indies, Asia and Italy. They bloom medium-sized flowers usually raised as ornamental plants.

Cosmos sulphureus, also called yellow cosmos or sulfur cosmos – native to Mexico, Central America, and South America. Its leaves appear opposite and pinnately divided. Available in colors of yellow, orange and red.

Cosmos atrosanguineus, also known as chocolate cosmos, a herbal perennial species with fleshy tuberous root. They grow up to 60 cm tall with shades that range from dark red to maroon-dark brown. Apart from the color, its fragrance is also like chocolates.

Read on for some great information about growing cosmos flowers.

Starting Cosmos Flower From Seed

Cosmos plants are easy to grow from seeds during spring. Simply plant them indoors approximately four to six weeks prior to the last expected frost. Use trays or pots which make them ideal for gently removing plants when transplanting.

Also, they don’t ask for too much as they thrive in fairly poor soil. When the seedlings reach three to four inches in height, transplant them into 5-inch pots. To sow seeds, simply use a moist, well-drained soil at least 4 inches in depth. Place cosmos seeds into the soil approximately one-quarter inch in depth.

Transplanting Your Cosmos Seedlings

After the danger of frost passes, transplant your seedlings to flower beds. Keep in mind they prefer a soil that isn’t too rich.

Rich soil will encourage the leaves and foliage to grow but will discourage them from blooming. Cosmos prefer a warmer climate with dry weather.

When you see spiky-brown seed heads, save these for the following year in a dry envelope or allow the cosmos seeds to go wherever the wind blows them and self-seed.

Deadheading And Pinching Back

When the cosmos finishes flowering, deadhead the plants by cutting off all of the dead flower blossoms. This will encourage the plant to produce more flowers and it will assist the plant in filling out properly.

When in full bloom, you may need to remove the blooms on a daily basis to keep plants looking healthy and full. Don’t be afraid to pinch off any extra stems or shoots that grow up from the cosmos plants. This will also encourage stronger more vigorous growth.

Care Of Your Cosmos Plant

Many of these plants will grow very tall and you may require staking to keep them from falling over. Staking cosmos also provides some protection from strong winds.

Cosmos work well along a fence line as they can use the fence for support. They also grow nicely along the sides of buildings.

Watering Your Cosmos

Although they are drought tolerant, your cosmos will require water on a regular basis, however, take care not to overwater. This can lead to fewer flowers and root rot.

Wait until your plant is dry to water it. Give it a nice deep drink of water when the soil dries out.

The rest of the care for your cosmos is up to mother nature. Be sure to plant them where they can get at least one-half of a day of full sunshine.

You can pretty much ignore this plant the rest of the time and yield beautiful flowers.