As Autumn is in full swing and Winter is slowly approaching, the one plant that always puts a smile on my face at this time of year is Cosmos bipinnatus Sensation Mixed. A rather well-suited name, I would think! With the sheer abundance of blooms, it lifts even the most dreary of days. Sensation indeed!
Cosmos species are native to scrub and meadowland in Mexico, although they have been introduced to many habitats across the world. Cosmos bipinnatus is considered a half-hardy annual. Plants often reappear via self-sowing for several years, although to ensure we do have plants each year, we should sow them indoors in early spring or directly into flower beds or pots after all the risk of frost has passed in early summer. I think it’s well worth the effort, as they provide interest over a very long period of time and make excellent cut flower material.
With their feathery foliage and delicate, almost translucent petals, they add a bit of charm to the garden, especially as they sway gracefully in the breeze. However, as they can grow up to 1m tall, they will need staking to prevent them from being blown over. And with regular deadheading, we can ensure a constant display of gorgeous, daisy-like flower heads. A plant that keeps on giving.