Cerinthe Major Purpurascens – Honeywort

I haven’t grown these plants before and they first came to my attention whilst watching an episode of Life in a Cottage Garden. Carole Klein was extolling their virtues and showing us how to start them from seed. The plant, fully grown in her own garden, looked enormous but I decided then that I must give them a try. I have put just two seeds into a little tepid water to soak and plan to sow them tomorrow, 6th February. The individual seeds are quite big. I bought mine from Higgledy at £1.99 for 10 seeds. There were actually 12 in the packet. Germination should be about two weeks. First seedling through after 8 days.

Cerinthe is a beautiful hardy annual. It has oval, fleshy blue-green leaves, mottled with white, and rich purple-blue, tubular flowers held inside sea blue bracts. Bees love it. For early blooms sow in pots indoors in early spring. Alternatively sow outdoors in April. Once introduced into the garden, self-sown seedlings will mean that it rarely disappears. information from BBC site.


  1. Catrina

    You must love blue flowers too. I see a lot of them in your blogs. This one is sure a beauty. It is a long time since I have grown it but will have to try again. These blue violets are great in the moon garden along with the whites.

    1. Chris (Post author)

      Hello Catrina, yes I do love all flowers but especially White and blue. Reminds me of a poem on my poetry weblog. Hope you are well and getting ready for a new season.

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