Cosmos bipinnatus 'Velouette' is an exceptional Cosmos variety. The large flowers are the same sizzling dark red as Rubenza, but the petals have a unique contrasting colour pattern. Some flowers have clear white stripes, and some are white with a dark red picotee.
Cosmos 'Velouette' is early flowering and uniform. It is a semi-dwarf variety that grows to a height of around 60 to 80cm (24 to 32in) and with a spread of 40cm (16in). The same height as Rubenza, they give a wonderful effect when planted in combination and are an amazing sight when planted in large drifts. The plants are a useful height and are short enough to be used at the front of the border, they can also be used in larger container planting.
This early flowering cosmos will start to bloom in as little as 70 days from sowing, going on to offer to six months of colour from May to October - keep on top of the deadheading and new flowers will just keep coming.
Cosmos bipinnatus, commonly called the garden Cosmos or Mexican aster, is a medium-sized flowering herbaceous plant native to Mexico. The species and its varieties and cultivars are popular as an easy to grow ornamental plant in temperate climate gardens.
The plants are ideally suited for the patio and terrace, while in the border, it is a true eye catcher. These compact cosmos plants do not require staking and are the perfect option for exposed gardens where taller varieties would be blown about by the wind. Use the blooms en masse for an elegant feel to your displays, if not, set them in combination with other annuals to complement pastel shades or calm hot colours.
With all eyes on these easy to grow summer performers, Cosmos lovers will simply adore this new addition to the colour range.
Sowing: Sow indoors March to April, or sow outdoors April to May
Sow indoors in early spring 3 to 4 weeks before planting outside, alternatively, the seed can also be sown directly where they are to flower in mid to late spring. They will take approx 70 days from sowing to flowering. Keep soil moderately moist during germination. Plant out three weeks after sowing at a 25cm (10in) on a sunny or half sunny spot.
Use well drained soil and cover to a depth of 3mm (1/8in). When large enough to handle, transplant the seedlings into small pots to grow on. Acclimatise to outdoor conditions for 10 to 15 days before planting out after all risk of frost 15cm (6in) apart.
Prepare the ground well and rake to a fine tilth. If sowing more than one annual in the same bed, mark the sowing areas with a ring of sand and label. Sow 1mm (1/18th in) deep in rows 30cm (12in) apart.
Sow seed sparingly or they will choke out other seedlings.
The seedlings will appear in rows approx 6 to 8 weeks after planting and can be easily told from nearby weed seedlings. Thin the seedlings out so they are finally 25cm (10in) apart. Carefully replant thinned plants.
When the seedlings have three pairs of leaves, pinch out the tips, leaving at least one pair of leaves.
Only water in an extended drought and do not apply large doses of fertiliser as flowering will be suppressed.
Stake the taller varieties with a single or tripod of canes and some twine. Cosmos foliage is finely-cut into threadlike segments. When flowering, the taller varieties may become top heavy. This problem is alleviated when grown in groups, as the bi-pinnate leaves interlock, and the colony supports itself.
Deadhead to prolong flowering and encourage new flower buds. At the season's end, don't be too quick to pull up withering cosmos plants. Birds (particularly gold finches) love to snack on their seedheads in autumn, and the seeds that they miss may drop to the ground and reward you the next year by sprouting into a whole new crop.
Cosmos is a cut-and-come-again bloomer, meaning that the sooner you cut the blooms, the quicker new buds will pop up to replace them. The blooms appear so profusely that you'll still have plenty of colour in the garden after you've picked your flowers.
If you sear the stem end in boiling water for twenty seconds they will last a week in water.
Cottage/Informal Gardens, Flowers Borders and Beds. Container Planting.
Cosmos have been reassuring gardeners ever since the 1930s, when breeders first coaxed cosmos to bloom earlier than the native Mexican species, the flower-growing public has been hooked.
Like many of our warm weather annuals such as marigolds, Cosmos originated in Mexico and South America. Spanish priests grew cosmos in their mission gardens in Mexico. The evenly placed petals led them to christen the flower "Cosmos," derived from the Greek kosmos, the word for harmony or ordered, or balanced universe. From this we also get the common name of "The Mexican Aster".
The species name is from the Latin bipinnatus meaning “twice-pinnate” The botanical epithet is from the Latin pinnatus meaning “with leaflets arranged in opposite pairs.
- Additional Information
Packet Size 1 gram Average Seed Count 150 seeds Seed Form Natural Seeds per gram 150 to 160 seeds per gram Family Asteraceae Genus Cosmea, Cosmos Species bipinnatus Cultivar Velouette Synonym Cosmea bipinnata Common Name Semi-Dwarf Mexican Aster Hardiness Half Hardy Annual Flowers White with a dark red picotee Natural Flower Time May to August Height 60cm (24in) Spread 40cm (16in) Position Needs full sun to flourish Soil Lean, well drained, sandy soils. Time to Sow Sow indoors March to April, or sow outdoors April to May Germination 7 to 10 days at 20-30*C (68-86*F)