The intense blue colour of the Chinese Forget Me Not offers so much country style to any flower arrangement. A touch of blue, or a lot of blue makes it worth growing this pretty blue flower.
You may be familiar with the classic biennial Forget-Me-Nots, Myosotis scorpioides, the tiny delicate little blue or pink flowers which often appear in our early spring gardens every year. In our zone 5b garden the flower stems of these blooms are usually very small and not big enough to put in a market bouquet.
But I have always loved them, and have often made little posies to bring inside to enjoy.
When I discovered the Chinese Forget Me Not, Cynoglossum amabile, I realized that this was is a much better option for our bouquets. They have the delicate blue flowers of their smaller counterpart, but also have longer stems, and are able to provide a wonderful accent to the feminine and rustic appearance of our bouquets.
The Chinese Forget Me Not Is Not A Real Forget Me Not
The Chinese Forget Me Not is not a real forget-me-not, but rather a look alike flower with similar blooms. It is also known as Chinese Hound’s Tongue.
It’s native to the Himalayas and Asia.
It can be a perennial in some warmer climates, but for us it’s a hardy annual which blooms in the season that it’s planted, and it is grown as an ornamental.
The Chinese Forget Me Not Flower
The flowers of the Chinese Forget Me Not come in shades of sky blue and pink.
We also had a lighter almost lavender color appear in our patch several years ago. I am wishing I had saved the seed that year to see if we could have gotten more of the same coloration. I have more of this seed from my original planting and will plant again this year to see if we can produce the lavender color again.
The flowers grow on much taller stems than the old fashioned biennial forget-me-nots. In our garden they grew to be about 24” tall. This year we will be planting cynoglossum firmament which can grow up to 36” in height.
Chinese Forget Me Not Care
We planted the Cynoglossum seeds inside in the spring in 120 plant trays under lights. Seeds were covered with soil since they require darkness for germination. The trays were placed on heat mats until they germinated.
They transplanted easily out into the garden in spring into landscape fabric, which we used for weed suppression. Plant spacing was 9”. It took a while for them to bloom, and by mid summer we had our first blooms.We then had another patch which bloomed in the fall, from a later summer sowing.
The plants were very easy to care for in the garden. They don’t like rich soil. We grow in heavy clay soil which we are amending each year to rebuild our soil health.The plants grew well in the clay without issue.
As a cut flower they were somewhat finicky for me, and had a tendency to wilt at times after cutting.The later fall blooms did better for us. I didn’t grow Chinese Forget Me Nots last year as a result of this, however plan to plant them again this year because I really do love the color and tiny delicate blue flowers.
Is The Chinese Forget Me Not Invasive?
There are a number of species of Cynoglossum. Cynoglossum officinale, a relative of the Chinese Forget Me Not, also known as common hound’s tongue, has been identified as a noxious weed.This plant has reddish purple flowers which produce barbed seeds that cause it to spread, and it has been a source of trouble for farmers and wildlife.
The ornamental Chinese Forget Me Not, the species I have grown in my garden, also produces seeds with tiny burrs that allows it to hitch a ride on animals and passersby. This ultimately allows it to spread to other areas outside of the planting area. It has not been identified as a noxious weed, and is readily available in seed form from seed sellers.
Some have described the plant as invasive in their garden and crowding out other plants. It would make sense to be cautious if this is happening in your location.
I have not had this experience in our garden, although we did have a few volunteer plants turn up in the sunflower patch the following year.
Finally, although I will be growing Chinese forget me not again at the flower farm, I think it would be important for anyone considering planting it to find out if this is a flower that can be grown in your area without the risk of spreading and interfering with native species.
Have you ever tried growing Chinese Forget Me Nots in the garden? Be sure to leave a comment below to share your experience!