Friday, May 22, 2009

Knautia macedonia/Crimson Scabious

Catherine, at A Gardener in Progress asked me what kind of knautia I have, and I told her I wasn't sure, but I seem to have 2 kinds.

The bed on the left was put in when our neighbor had to have her water main replaced.  The next year, we added the bed to the right of the sidewalk.  Some of the plants are the same as the other side, but some, I just put in something similar.  I added knautia from a friend's garden across from the other.  They've been in several years now, and are a bit different from each other.

This is the one on the right, that I think looks like Catherine's:

This is the one on the left, more compact, and not blooming yet:

Do you think they look like different kinds?  I'll post a photo of the smaller one when it blooms.  I don't remember if there is a difference in the flowers.


  1. Hi Susan~~ A cultivar has been developed from the species and indeed it is a dwarf form: Knautia macedonia 'Mars Midget.' I bet this is what you have.

    I had the same occurrence last year but my 'Mars' didn't survive the winter.

    Apparently there are cultivars with more purplish flowers. Thompson and Morgan sells the seed. I'd like to try it some day.

  2. Those look like gomphrena, but are more beautiful, Sue. I've never heard of these, are they summer/spring bloomers?

  3. Hi there Susan .. I love that intense red ! reminds me of Astrantia major 'Ruby Wedding' .. which I would love to get myself !
    Thise reds really are striking in the garden : )

  4. hi...have not seen these flowers before....they are beautiful. lovely color.

    PS: Sue, long back you had asked me to put up some pictures of my school. do check out my blog. i have put up a few this time.

  5. I will have to try Knautia. It's lovely.

  6. Thanks to you I've learned something new! I think I might still be confused though. Is this related to scabiosa? This is definitely what I have and when I searched for it, it showed the same way you titiled your post. The plant I have was labeled scabiosa, so either it was labeled wrong or they are related.
    Either way, I'm glad to finally know what I have! :)

  7. Catherine, when I Googled "Knautia/ Scabiosa" there were some that said that, I think, but the ones that said knautia put it the way I did. I am a bit confused, too, because I thought maybe you spelled it the way you did because you were thinking it looked like a pincushion flower. I think they are related to each other. Hey, I just found a couple interesting sites that may or may not shed light on whether scabiosa is just another name knautia is called.

  8. My knautias aren't blooming yet; and won't be for at least another month or six weeks. So I have a bit of knautia envy.

  9. Grace, I couldn't repeat my search this evening. I did see something about Mars Midget earlier, but didn't think that's what the one plant was. I don't remember if it was because of the date it was introduced, or the fact that I got it at a place that I've bought knautia from a long time ago, my favorite local nursery I did a post on.

    Chandramouli, the flower is flatter than gomphrea, but they are on stems that are long like them. It is mid to late spring here. Summer officially starts June 21 or 22.

    Joy, I looked up the flower you mentioned, and it does look like knautia. I like it. The leaves look prettier shaped than knautia, but I also like the uniqueness of the shape of the leaves of knautia,

    Thanks Nitu, and thanks for reminding me of your school posts. I went back and started to get caught up with your blog, then got sidetracked. The pics are awesome, and I need to get back to read the posts.

    Sweet Bay, it sounds like there are a few to choose from. If you don't mind deadheading, and shaping the plants a little, knautia will reward you and bloom all summer.

  10. I see what you mean, it seems to be called several things. I like the sound of knautia since I don't have any in my garden yet. This has been interesting!

  11. For anyone still subscribed to this comment thread, Grace was most likely right that the smaller knautia is Mars Midget. When I went to the garden center today, I saw some for sale, but forgot to ask if that's what they had that long ago.

    Thanks, Grace!


I welcome comments and questions from anyone, including those who do it anonymously. Some people find my posts by doing searches, and I like hearing from them. I guess spammers won't even read this message, but I will delete spam as soon as I see it.