Forget-Me-Not is flowering plant in the genus of Myosotis which has about fifty different species. Blooming in spring, these flowers are very small, about one centimeter in diameter. The flowers have five lobes that can be blue, pink or white and have yellow centers. However, a blue colored flower is the most common variation of the plant. Forget-Me-Nots are extremely popular in gardens and in the wild they grow to five to twelve inches tall.
Growing Requirements for Forget-Me-Not
In order to grow Forget-Me-Not flowers, one should prepare the soil by mixing in compost before placing the seed in. The seeds should be planted in early spring so that the flowers will bloom on time later in the season. Distance between the seeds does not normally matter because Forget-Me-Nots are not sensitive to crowds.
The seeds should be watered often in order to be kept moist. Forget-Me-Nots are normally found on river banks in the wild and grow the best in moist environments. The plants can tolerate only partial sun and shade, therefore they should not be planted where they are subjected to intense sunlight. They grow the best under trees, around tall shrubs, and in rock gardens with some shade.
Taking Care of Forget-Me-Not
Most of the flowers only last for one season and when they begin to wilt in late summer they should be removed in order to allow for replanting the next year. Forget-Me-Nots need to have wilted flowers trimmed because the plant will drop new seeds in order to maintain the population. This reseeding could prove problematic because while the flowers are not sensitive to crowding, the resources available can be stressed.
Forget-Me-Nots should be watered regularly. One should take special care when weeding around seedlings as they can be fragile and easy to destroy or dig up.
History of Forget-Me-Nots
Forget-Me-Nots have various legends and folklore surrounding them in many cultures around the world. The flowers are native to New Zealand but have escaped gardens from which they were introduced and into the wild. One popular legend states the flowers were named when a 15th-century knight fell into a river as he went to pick a bunch of flowers for his lover. As he was drowning in the water he threw the flowers to the woman and shouted, “Forget me not.” Today the flower is a symbol of a woman’s faithfulness and love. According to Christian lore however, the flowers originated when the child Jesus Christ created them in remembrance of Mary’s eyes.
The flowers are also very prominent in literature. They appear in poems, epics, and novels from many famous authors such as Henry David Thoreau and J.R.R. Tolkien.
Common Questions and Answers About Forget-Me-Not
Are forget-me-nots annual or perennial?
Both annual and perennial varieties of forget-me-nots can be found as species under the botanical genera Myosotis. Whether your forget-me-nots will grow as annuals or perennials depends on which variety of the plant you have.
Are forget-me-nots deer resistant?
Yes, forget-me-nots are deer resistant.
Are forget-me-nots invasive?
Yes, forget-me-nots are invasive. You can control their spread by pulling up the plants and their roots, then hoeing the soil, before the forget-me-nots have gone to seed. Forget-me-nots spread by means of both their seeds and the stolons, which take root at leaf nodes similar to strawberry plants. Be sure to remove every last bit of the roots as well as completing this task before the plants reseed themselves in order to control their spread effectively.
Are forget-me-nots poisonous to dogs, cats, or humans?
Forget-me-nots are not poisonous to humans or to pets. In fact, when pesticides are not used, the flowers are edible.
Can forget-me-nots be grown in pots?
Yes, forget-me-nots can be grown in containers both indoors and outdoors. Forget-me-nots need plenty of air circulation to thrive, so plant each in its own individual 12-inch container with drainage holes. Plant them with a light, standard potting soil that stays moist but drains well, and find a spot for them that gets full or partial sunlight, such as the windowsill of a south- or east-facing window.
Can you split forget-me-nots?
Perennial forget-me-nots can be divided, while there’s really no reason to divide annual varieties because they propagate themselves through reseeding. If your forget-me-nots have come back up after previous winter seasons, they’re perennials that can be divided. The perennials also have glossy leaves, while the leaves of the annual varieties have a hairy texture. Splitting up clumps of forget-me-nots helps the plants to develop stronger stems and prevents center die out. In early spring, turn up your forget-me-nots by digging around the root zone. Divide the plant into sections by hand, making sure each section has plenty of well-developed roots and several healthy stems.
Do forget-me-nots attract butterflies?
Forget-me-nots come with the benefit of attracting pollinators to the garden, including butterflies. It’s a source of early nectar for them from late March on through the rest of the blooming season.
Do forget-me-nots come back every year?
Perennial varieties of forget-me-not do come back in the spring, sprouting from the roots underground to create new growth. They live for multiple seasons and also propagate themselves by reseeding and via the spread of roots to create new plants next to the original plants. However, there are biennial (two-year) and annual varieties of forget-me-nots as well, which do not come back every year. The perennial varieties have glossy, smooth leaves, whereas the other species of forget-me-nots have foliage with a hairy texture.
Do forget-me-nots like sun or shade?
Forget-me-nots can be grown in locations that range from full sun to partial shade.
Do forget-me-nots need full sun?
Forget-me-nots can either be grown in full sun or in part sun/part shade.
How do you harvest forget-me-not seeds?
If you’re growing forget-me-nots, you’re not likely to have a lot of reason to collect the seeds. Forget-me-nots reseed themselves and also spread via underground roots, so they don’t need help from the gardener. However, you may want to plant forget-me-nots in a new area of your garden or share the seeds with a friend. In those cases, you can spread newspapers underneath your forget-me-not plants once they begin to turn brown. Once the newspapers are in place, begin pulling up stems of the forget-me-nots with your hands, then deposit the stems onto the newspapers. Shake the stems to get the flowerheads to drop the shiny black seeds onto the newspapers. Then you can simply fold the newspapers and funnel the forget-me-not seeds into an appropriate container.
How long does it take for forget-me-nots to grow?
Forget-me-not seeds germinate eight to 14 days after they’re planted. After that, it takes about a year for forget-me-nots to grow to maturity and be able to flower.
How often do you water forget-me-nots?
Water forget-me-nots that are growing indoors when the top three inches of the soil they’re planted in is dry. You can check the moisture level by sticking a finger into the container where forget-me-nots are growing. If the soil sticks to your finger, it’s still moist. Hydrate deeply enough for the water to drip from the container’s drainage holes. Reduce this schedule during the dormancy period in winter to once or twice per month, going back to watering when the top three inches are dry in the spring. Forget-me-nots growing outdoors in dry locations may also need some help from the gardener when it comes to hydration. These plants love moisture, so never permit the soil to go completely dry.
How tall do forget-me-nots grow?
Forget-me-nots can reach two feet in height when cared for properly.
What colors do forget-me-nots come in?
Forget-me-not flowers come in shades of blue, yellow, pink, and white, with yellow or white centers. The blue variety is most common and the most popular with gardeners.
What time of year do forget-me-nots bloom?
When they are at least a year old, forget-me-nots flower after a period of rejuvenation in the spring that follows the wintertime dormancy.
More Information on Forget-Me-Not
Additional information about Forget-Me-Not can be found at the following websites:
Better Homes & Gardens covers Forget-Me-Nots
Gardening Know How covers Controlling Forget-Me-Nots
Gardening Know How covers Dividing Forget-Me-Nots
Gardening Know How covers Growing Forget-Me-Nots
SFGate Homeguides covers Colors of Forget-Me-Nots
SFGate Homeguides covers Are Forget-Me-Nots Poisonous?
SFGate Homeguides covers How to Grow Forget-Me-Nots Indoors
SFGate Homeguides covers Growing Stages of Forget-Me-Nots
SFGate Homeguides covers How Long For Forget-Me-Nots to Germinate
SFGate Homeguides covers Sun or Shade for Forget-Me-Nots
Hunker covers How Long do Forget-Me-Nots Bloom
Hunker covers How to Prune Forget-Me-Nots
Sunday Gardener covers Plants for Butterflies
Sunset covers Your Guide to Forget-Me-Nots
Swallowtail Garden Seeds covers Water Forget-Me-Nots
the flower expert covers Alaska State Flower
Learn about the Scientific Classification and Legend of Forget-Me-Not at The Flower Expert.
Find details on Forget-Me-Not growing conditions at Dave’s Garden.