By: Becca Badgett, Co-author of How to Grow an EMERGENCY Garden
The true forget-me-not flower (Myosotis scorpioides) grows on tall, hairy stems which sometimes reach 2 feet in height. Charming, five-petaled, blue blooms with yellow centers explode from the stems from May through October. Flower petals are sometimes pink. Forget-me-not plants often grow near brooks and streams and other bodies of water which offer the high humidity and moisture that is desirable to this species.
The perennial forget-me-not flower spreads easily, freely self-seeding for more of the wildflower to grow and bloom in shady spots where the tiny seeds may fall. Forget-me-not flower care is minimal, as with most native wildflowers. Forget-me-not plants grow best in a damp, shady area, but can adapt to full sun.
Forget-me-not flower care will likely include removing these plants from unwanted spaces. While the forget-me-not flower is attractive in many designs, the free seeding specimen may take over areas where other plants are planned. Use the forget-me-not plant in areas that are too wet to support the root system of other flowers. Growing forget-me-nots will include watering those planted in drier areas.
The true forget-me-not plant, Myosotis scorpioides (Myosotis palustris), is native to the United States, making it a low maintenance addition to the landscape. Fertilize forget-me-not plants once or twice each season, once in spring and again in autumn, if needed
Understanding how to grow forget-me-nots leads to their placement in the appropriate area. The specimen is excellent for naturalizing a shady, wooded area. This location allows for the shade and moisture retention needed for optimum performance of this wildflower. Of course, if you have a shady pond or bog area in need of landscaping, use this moisture loving flower there.
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Finding ways on how to plant forget-me-not seeds? Below are a number of quick steps to start off.
Forget-me-nots grow pretty easily . If you’re planning to thicken your landscape with small flowering plants, it’s a good option. This ornamental can grow around 30 centimeters long. It’s a perfect ground cover supporting the soil with its root system.
Its blue colored petals topped with a tiny yellow center make it appear pleasing to the eye. Other varieties of forget-me-nots can have pink and white flowers as well. Though it looks tiny, it can make the garden appear bulky when all the plants bloom all together.
Siberian bugloss (Brunnera macrophylla) is a member of the borage family. As its name indicates, it is native to Siberia and the eastern Mediterranean. It is called False Forget-Me-Not because the plants have bright blue flowers in the spring that strongly resemble Forget-Me-Nots.
The flowers are bright blue and look like Forget-Me-Nots.
Siberian bugloss is a perennial flowering plant that is hardy in zones 3 – 8. It grows best in moist shade, but will tolerate some sun in the mornings. It’s low growing, about 12 – 18 inches tall and 12 – 24 inches wide. It is often used as a ground cover because it grows in clumps that spread by underground rhizomes. The leaves are 6 inches and heart-shaped. Newer cultivars have variegated leaves. My favorite is Jack Frost which has silver variegation and really shines in a shady spot in my garden. The newer variegated cultivars spread more slowly than the original green leaved plants.
The flowers are bright blue and held above the plants on racemes. Bloom time is April – May. The flowers will last up to 4 weeks. These plants will readily self-sow so you may want to remove the flowers after they die before they have a chance to form seeds. If you don’t mind the plants self-sowing in your garden, be mindful that only the original green plants will come true from the seed. The newer cultivars with the pretty leaves are hybrids so their offspring will not look like them.
Do not apply a granular fertilizer in addition to a water soluble mixture. Choose one method or the other to prevent over fertilization.
Forget-me-nots are water-loving plants that produce small, dainty blue flowers. They can be grown as annuals or perennials but typically perform as biennials in most climates. Forget-me-nots typically bloom very little during their first year of growth and bloom profusely in their second spring. Blooms continue from early spring until the first frost, and the plants remain dormant through winter. They usually will re-seed on their own if properly maintained and will reappear year after year.
Plant forget-me-nots in an area that receives filtered to moderate shade and with wet gravelly soil. The natural habitat of forget-me-nots is near creek and stream beds in several inches of water. Select a planting area that is low and easy to keep wet. Sow seeds directly in the garden in early fall at least 12 inches apart and cover with 1/8 inch of moist soil.
Keep the soil around forget-me-not flowers moist at all times and never allow it to dry out. Adequate water is the most important factor in growing healthy forget-me-nots. Water daily in dry areas and enough to keep the soil constantly wet in cooler climates, usually once every two to three days.
Mist the foliage frequently with warm water to increase humidity and help emulate the plant's natural environment. Fill a spray bottle with lime-free water and spray directly around the leaves about once a day. Misting twice a day may be necessary in very dry climates.
Apply a slow-release granular fertilizer once a year in the early spring. Use according to the manufacturer's instructions for proper dosage and application. Alternatively, you may feed forget-me-not flowers once weekly from spring to fall using a water soluble fertilizer.
Check the leaves regularly for signs of pests. Although they typically are pest-free when properly maintained, aphids sometimes attack new foliage growth. Knock them away with a forceful spray from a water hose or apply insecticidal soap to the leaves according to the manufacturer's directions if aphids.
There is a variety of different Forget-Me-Nots that are found in this world, most of which have originated from Europe and Asia. Each variety has special features, characteristics, color and size that set them apart from one another.
Below are the different beautiful types of Forget-Me-Not flowers that exist in today’s time.
Scientific Name: Myosotis sylvatica
This is also commonly known as “woodland forget-me-not” and it is a type of short-lived, herbaceous perennial plant. It belongs to the Boraginaceae family and has originated from Europe and Asia.
The Wood Forget-Me-Not is a tufted and hairy spring-flowering plant that is easily grown in well-drained, moist and organically rich soils. It prefers full sun to partial shade in order to fully grow, and it grows to an average of 5”-12” tall. This plant produces beautiful bright blue, white, or pink stellar flowers that often have striking yellow or white eyes.
Its flowering period begins sometime during mid-spring and ends in the mid-summer season, after which the juicy nectar and the pollen of its flowers are thoroughly enjoyed by butterflies and bumblebees. This plant is particularly famous for being really low-maintenance and is also super versatile since it performs really well in rock gardens, borders and banks, and under-planting shrubs.
This variety consists of oblong, hairy green-colored leaves that grow approximately 1-3” long. It is also very easy to look after this plant, and it is resilient to most pets, particularly rabbits and deer.
Scientific Name: Myosotis scorpioides
This is another herbaceous perennial Forget-Me-Not that is native to the stream-banks and moist meadows of Eurasia. It can also be found in several New England States and some wet areas of North America. The habitat of the Water Forget-Me-Not ranges from wetland margins, marshes, and shores of lakes or rivers.
This perennial wildflower grows to an average height of 6-10” and consists of a hairy, medium-colored stem. It prefers growing in wet to moist conditions and partial or full sun exposure. It also has a great ability to adapt to the ordinary garden soil, given that it is kept sufficiently moist and also contains clay-loam or simple loam.
The plant produces flowers that grow in clusters called racemes and are typically 2-10” long. Each flower consists of around 5 petals, and these petals or sepals are usually infused into a tube or cup.
Scientific Name:Myosotis arvensis
This variety of Forget-Me-Not plant belongs to the Borage family, particularly the Boraginaceae and is native to Asia and Europe. It has also been widely introduced to eastern and northern North America.
The Field Forget-Me-Not is usually biennial or annual, and sometimes a perennial herb. It grows to an average height of 4-16 inches which make about 10-40 centimeters. It produces corolla blue, funnel-shaped flowers that are usually fused and also 5-lobed. The leaves of this plant stalked basal leaves with stalks that are widely winged.
The success and popularity of this plant is believed to be based on its flexibility because its seeds have the ability to wait to sprout for a period of 30 years and then start germinating when the growing conditions become ideal and favorable. However, it is not so flexible in terms of the soil conditions and is usually spotted rocks surfaces, like in vegetable gardens.
Scientific Name:Myosotis alpestris
This plant is also known as ‘Scorpion Grass’ and belongs to the Boraginaceae family. It is typically found in Britain and mostly grows on meadows, damp woodlands, and basic rock formations.
The Alpine Forget-Me-Not is a type of a short-lived biennial or hardy biennial that produces leaves that take the form of a lance and beautiful bright, blue-colored flowers. They also often contain striking yellow centers. The flowering period for this plant begins during the spring season, all the way through the early summer season.
An interesting fact about this plant is that its flower is the state flower of Alaska and is also the county flower of Westmorland. It prefers growing under partial or full sunlight and grows to 0.2 m (0ft 8in) by 0.3 m (1ft). It ideally grows in well-drained soils that have light (sandy), heavy (clay) or medium (loamy) soils.
Scientific Name:Myosotis stricta
This variety is also known as ‘Blue Forget-Me-Not’ and is native to Eurasia, although it also has been widely introduced to New England and North America. It belongs to the Borage family, to the species Boraginaceaeand is an annual herb that is taproot short.
The Strict Forget-Me-Not grows to an average height of 2-8 inches with an erect stem that is usually branched out from the base and has hooked hairs at the surface. The flowers of this plant are rectangular, 1-2 mm wide with light blue corolla and are usually funnel-shaped.
This plant is familiar to most people and holds quite a reputation for being a symbol of friendship and love. It is also of the earliest blooming plants in the entire Forget-Me-Not family and is typically found on rocky outcrops. The habitat of this plant ranges from sandy soils to dry and disturbed fields.
Scientific Name:Myosotis ramosissima
This is a slender and medium-sized, slightly hairy plant that only grows to an average height of 2 to 5 cm tall. It typically grows in dry and open habitats and its flowering period begins in April and ends by June. It is believed to have originated from Britain, particularly in the extreme north region.
The Early Forget-Me-Not belongs to the Boraginaceae family species and is an annual herb, typically with a short and dark brown main root. In Southern Finland, this plant bursts out into blue floral sprays, particularly during the spring season on hilly fields and rocky outcrops.
While the flowers on their own are only a few millimeters in diameter, but when they grow in massive varieties, they can turn the whole landscape a beautiful blue color.
The leaves of this plant are basal leaves, usually in a rosette or lanceolate stem, with un-stalked and oblong-shaped leaves.
Scientific Name:Myosotis laxa
This species of the Forget-ME-Not plant is also known by several other common names including ‘Bay Forget-Me-Not’ and. Small Flower Forget-Me-Not’. It is mainly found in the northern parts of the entire Northern Hemisphere and prefers to grow in several types of habitats including wet and moist soils.
The Tufted Forget-Me-Not plant is typically native to the pond, stream banks and also several seepages in North America. Its habitat is commonly described as aquatic and terrestrial, mostly comprising of wetlands.
This plant produces gorgeous flowers that sport a variety of flowers ranging from red, purple, blue and red. The leaves of this plant are usually simple, often lobed and un-lobed, but are never separated into leaflets. The flowers also typically grow in clusters called racemes that are tightly curled at the tip of the flowers. The clusters open up gradually, in a successive manner, as the tips of the flowers elongate and unfurl.
Scientific Name:Myosotis discolor
This Forge-Me-Not variety is native to Europe and has also been introduced to western and eastern North America. It ideally grows in a variety of habitats, most commonly in disturbed areas like roadsides.
The Changing Forget-Me-Not is a perennial or annual growing herb that typically reaches a height of 10-50 centimeters. It often produces a tall and slender, erect system that may be branched out sometimes. It produces leaves that may adopt a variety of shapes including oblong and lance-shaped, and they are normally 4 centimeters long while being just a centimeter wide. The leaves are often coated with soft, small and straight hairs.
The flowers produced by this plant are initially a gorgeous yellow or cream, color after which they gradually turn to a pretty shade of pink, and finally a striking blue. This is primarily why it is called the “changing” Forget-Me-Not since it is always changing colors as it reaches the maturity stage. Its flowers are also often arranged in a series of tiny coiled or curved at the top of the stem.
Scientific Name:Myosotis latifolia
This species of the Forget-Me-Not plant is native to northwestern Africa and has also been introduced to the west coast of the United States. In the United States, it is popularly found along the Pacific coastline of north and central California. It belongs to the genus Myosotis which comes under the family of Boraginaceae.
The Broadleaf Forget-Me-Not usually produces leaves that are oval in shape, and they are apparently the largest in size at the woody base of the plant’s stem. The plant easily grows in several types of habitats including disturbed areas, moist soils, and shaded areas.
The flowers of this plant sport a tubular shape and often appear in flat pink colors or sometimes contains a blue color up reaching a centimeter wide. The stems have a woody base with a layer of rough, white hairs. The inflorescence of this plant initially appears in an elongated cluster that is very compact in the start, but then gradually starts to open and become loose throughout the growing season.
Scientific Name:Myosotis decumbens
This type of Forget-Me-Not is a plant species of the genus called Myosotis that is a member of the Borage family, specifically the Boraginaceae. It is a perennial herb that grows to an average height of 15-40 cm, that is, 6-16 inches. The stem of this plant is usually described as ‘ascending-erect’ that is often branched and consists of hair-spreading flush at its surface.
The Lapland Forget-Me-Not plant grows in Northern Finland, and some of its widely favored habitats include stream banks, broad-leaved forests, birch woodlands, and springs. One thing that is common among all these habitats is that they are wet, tangled thickets that are nearly impassable.
The flowering period for this plant ranges from July to August during which it produces wheel-shaped flowers that contain a corolla sapphire and a funnel-shaped mouth with protuberances.
Transplant the seedlings into individual pots with drainage holes in the bottoms two weeks after they develop their first set of true leaves. Use houseplant potting soil. Continue to water them when the top of the potting soil begins to dry.
Get the seedlings used to direct sunlight gradually. Begin setting them outside in bright or dappled shade in an area protected from drying winds for an hour or two during the day when there is no danger of frost. Move them into 30 to 60 minutes of direct morning sun after a few days. Increase the length of time they are exposed to the sun by about 30 minutes each day until they are in the sun for four hours each day. Allow the potting soil to dry slightly before watering.
True forget-me-nots can be planted at the edge of a pond or stream right along the edge of the water.
Plant forget-me-not seedlings 9 to 12 inches apart in the spring after the last expected frost. Dig the planting holes just deep enough so the bases of the plants are no deeper than they were in their containers. Plant them in fast-draining soil that has plenty of organic matter. Mix a 2- to 3-inch depth of aged cow manure, compost, sphagnum peat moss, leaf mold or composted pine bark mulch into the top 8 to 10 inches of garden soil before planting. The pH should be between 5.6 and 7.
Plant forget-me-nots in partial shade or full sun. In areas with hot summers, plant them where they will get direct sunlight in the morning but shade in the afternoon.
Forget-me-not flowers cam be edible, especially the Sylvatica variety that we mentioned above. If you haven’t used chemicals then you can add them to your salad or make candies with them. Not all varieties are edible some are toxic like the broadleaf and the Chinese forget me not. Be very careful and always check.
You can also make your own tea. It is a well-known variety of purple flowers and it is caffeine-free. When you drink this tea the blood pressure will be reduced, it can also help you relax and sleep well. Finally, you if you are on a diet you can drink it to help you have a balanced diet. Use the Sylvatica variety.
Forget me not can be used as a herbal medicine too. It can be used to stop the bleeding (use it externally), as a remedy for eye conditions, it also cures nosebleeds, it improves lung, stomach and kidney functioning. It is used in medicines for years. Ask your doctor for advice, he or she knows better.
This Lovely Flower has benefits too. You should be careful though because not all the varieties can be used. You will choose the variety or varieties that you like best and have them in your house and garden.
The only thing that this flower need is to have moist and well-drained soil. Follow our tips and you will have a garden full of amazing forget me not flowers that will have a special meaning for you.